I spent the entire month of June in Seattle visiting family and friends! Its always fun to be a tourist where you are from and rediscover all that you have missed after being away for so long! I visited Pike Place Market, attended several Seattle Mariners games, took a ferry to the islands and had the opportunity to play Chambers Bay where they had played The US OPEN the week before! I was also able to attend my nieces high school graduation and head up to Bellingham to see friends I have not seen in years. I also attended the Kenny Chesney / Jason Aldean concert. Chesney is the best and the people watching was out-of-this-world! The weather was unseasonably spectacular! Without question it was a wonderful trip filled with countless memories!
No, I did not win The US OPEN, but I did have a chance to photo-op with the historical trophy and play the very difficult course. When I attended the practice round for The Open, it was clear the course was going to be the most difficult I have ever played. The hilly terrain, narrow fairways and questionable greens made for an adventerous round of golf. There are no golf carts at Chambers Bay. Although I did not score particularly well, I was proud to have completed the more than 8-mile hike around the course in 88 degree weather. I feel blessed to have been able to play the round with my brother Ian.
In my on-going quest to have the best Bloody Mary, I stumbled across SAMS TAVERN on Capitol Hill in Seattle. Their bloody has just about every possible topping-including two mini-burgers. They call themselves a burger joint, but they are more like the ultimate dive-bar. The service is great, fun beer selection and the food is incredible. Best time to go is in the middle of the day. They are slammed with a line out the door on weekend nights.
CHEF is everything I wanted it to be! Its a must see if you have worked in the food industry or know someone who has. Jon Favereau is brilliant in the lead role in this movie. CHEF pays attention to detail as it tells a simple story of a man dealing with the ups and downs of family life working in such a demanding industry. Faverau nails this role. He deserves high praise for making it so authentic. He is more than believable as a chef and flawed father.
We talked with him on our show this week. He was genuine, appreciative and more than kind. I left the interview and movie and even bigger fan of his.
Dyngus Day continues to grow in Cleveland! This was the fourth Dyngus Day here in Northeast Ohio and it has grown from Gordon Square to Tremont. Ive attended every Dyngus Day in Cleveland and always make sure I stop by The ParkView where it all began. Other stops this year included Prosperity, Hoopples and Southside.
Draft Day wont win an Oscar, but the movie is a must see for any Browns fan. Anyone from Cleveland will appreciate how the city and the team are portrayed in the Kevin Costner film. I have to admit,I had my doubts going in to see Draft Day, but I left the theatre entertained and proud to live in Cleveland. For everything it lacks, it makes up in entertainment value and staying true to Cleveland and its fans. The cameos from NFL players and stars added to the authentic vibe. No one is going to see this movie in mass, but Browns fans and Clevelanders should.
I really enjoyed The Way Way Back. The movie stars Steve Carrell and tells the story of a dysfunctional family summer vacation. I think everyone will take a lil something from this movie. It has a real-life vibe and provides several relateable comedic moments.
Just got back from a wonderful trip to Hawaii! Ten days in the Maui sun is exactly what I needed after this long Cleveland winter! The ultimate goal of the trip was to celebrate my wifes 50th birtday by going to the only state she hadnt been to. It was also a chance for my daughter to enjoy her spring break. Hightlights included the famous "Road to Hana" tour, golf with my daughter and some amazing food!
We decided to take a tour bus on "The Road to Hana". Why not leave it up to a professional when it comes to a single-lane road carved into the side of a mountain? Spectacular views enabled me to get tons of great pix!
My favorite restaurant, by far, was "Mamas Fish House". The food, the setting on the beach and the service were top shelf.
I really enjoyed the "Oyster Shooters" at MaLa on Front Street in Lahaina. Yes, its a touristy area, but they were unreal! I would go to that restaurant every night if I could.
Maui was everything I wanted and needed it to be! Mission accomplished! ALOHA!
A couple of quick random cigar location suggestions...
I recently discovered "Havana House West" in Bath, Ohio. What a great place to chill with a cigar. Its laid back, great selection and has a great room to enjoy a smoke. The guys who work there are very cool and quite helpful. I love going there to watch a game and have a cigar!
On a recent visit to Palm Spriings, California to visit my parents, I stumbled across "The Tinder Box" in downtown Palm Springs. Best selection in the area and the people who work there know their stuff!
On Maui, I stopped in at "Sir Wilfreds" in Lahaina. They have a wonderful selection of cigars that includes their own "BIG KAHUNA". I bought a box of them and loved them! The staff was great! Its also worth noting that they are a great coffee house as well.
When I went to the SuperBowl in January, I stopped into Barclay-Rex Pipe shop and enjoyed a Davidoff Anniversario #2 (One of my all-time favorites) The shop is located in The Financial District near Wall Street. Causally classy room with great customer service.
Its SUPERBOWL week! I cant wait to make the trek to New York later this week to see the Seahawks take on the Denver Broncos! I grew up near Seattle and have been a life-long fan.
This will be the second time I will have made the journey to the SUPERBOWL to see the Seahawks play. In 2005, I was in Detroit to see them lose a controversial game to the Steelers. Once again, Ill travel to a cold-weather city to see them attempt to win their first-ever SUPERBOWL.
I had the opportunity to host CHARDON WINTERFEST this past week. Its only fitting that the temps dipped below zero with the wind blowing sideways. Chardon is a great community and it was awesome to see so many families come out and celebrate the season.
What a treat to see Humble G The Fiddla this past weekend at The Unite the City event at The Cleveland Zoo! I was introduced to his music when I had the opportunity to introduce then Senator OBama here in Cleveland. Humble G was one of a handful of artists who played before his campaign speech.
Humble G is a self-taught violinist who combines hip-hop and his violin. He is a unique artist who is amazing live!
Im a cider guy and I may have found my all-time favorite cider at The Tilted Kilt in downtown Cleveland. Its called Mackenzies Fall Reserve and its a must-try if you are into cider. Youre welcome....
Here is the schedule of events for tonights CLEVELAND ROCKS NYE 2014 at Public Square tonight...
8:00 PM Â Doors Open
8:00 PM Â 9:45 PM Â Local DJs perform live music
10:00 PM Â 10:22 PM Â Welcome from Chris Van Vliet, National Anthem and Prayer for Cleveland
10:30 PM Â Krewella hits the stage
11:40Â 11:45 Â Mayor Jackson and County Executive Ed Fitzgerald | Introduction of Drew Carey
11:45 PM Â 11:59 PM Â Drew fires up the Crowd
11:59:30 PM --- Countdown Begins
Midnight HAPPY NEW YEAR! Fire Works begin
12:15am Fireworks end and CLE Rocks NYE concludes
THE WOLF OF WALL STREET. On the surface, this movie is all about sex, drugs and money. This is WALL STREET, THE BOILER ROOM and GLENN GARY GLENN ROSS all put together with a whole lotta T&A. The movie is long at almost three hours. In fact, I had it mentally edited before the closing credits. But overall, its a good watch. The scriipt didnt quite pull of the GORDON GEKKO "Greed is good" speech. Nor did it capture ALEC BALDWINs "Always Be Closing". But they tried and it was good enough.
AMERICAN HUSTLE. One of my favorite movies of the year. Great cast! Someone is gonna win some kind of award. CHRISTIAN BALE is brilliant, BRADLEY COOPER nails his role and AMY ADAMS and JENNNIFER LAWRENCE are crazy good in their roles. Its smart, funny and captures the era nicely.
THE SECRET LIFE of WALTER MITTY. I expected more from this flick. The previews lead me to believe it was going to be an amazing worldly adventure. It was a good story that lacked that something extra that all great movies have. I liked how the movie gets neatly put together at the end, but overall, it was just ok. Good enough for killing time before Christmas dinner.
Im not sure how to sum up 2013. It was a year that went by very quickly and was filled with plenty of ups and downs. Christmas came and went and now its on to a brand new year.
I expect great things to happen in 2014. Im motivated more than ever to have the best year of my life! It will be healthier year filled with more adventures and travels. It will be a positive year spent with positive people and better choices. As I get older, time seems to go by faster and faster. Its time to breathe it all in and value each moment. The new year is an opportunity to purge, re-load and take inventory on what is truly important.
What an exciting last few weeks of live music!
PINK @ The Q was incredible. One of the best shows I have seen in a long time! She is authentic and makes it all look so easy. I believe her when she sings. She is the real deal. Loved the acoustic set! It was great to hear the early hits too!
JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE @ The Q was epic. This was a much different show than the first time I saw him at The AGORA a few years ago. That show was about an hour...this time, it was three hours of JT! Although the show was amazing, it seemed to be a bit long. Lots of new music up front. All of his hits came at the end, but worth the wait.
The Q104 HO SHOW with Backstreet Boys, Plain White Ts & Gavin DeGraw at House of Blues proved to be the best station Christmas concert we have ever hosted. The crowd was all in and all three acts delivered!
It has been awesome getting to see ED KWOLCZYK in smaller venues since "LIVE" broke up. His acoustic stuff has been fantastic! His voice is as strong as ever. Seeing him play Kent Stage this past week was a real treat. Equally as good was his performance at The Beachland Ballroom a few years back. I have been drawn to his music because of the powerful lyrics and spiritual message. That combined with the full band adds up to greatness. I do miss seeing "LIVE" in concert and think its time they figure things out and get the band back together before its too late. This band is far to good to leave it here. Ed is solid as a solo artist, but magical with the full band. Its time guys....
I feel so blessed seeing such great music in an intimate setting. THE FRAY played a private show for us in The Foundation room of The House of Blues in Cleveland last week in front of a small group of listeners and staff. I had always liked the bands radio singles, but didnt fully appreciate their music until I saw them a couple years ago at the old Tower City venue. It was great seeing them in a lounge setting because of the opportunity to interact with them. Their music translates wonderfully acoustically and their latest single "Love Dont Die" was terrific live!
This year, Cleveland Magazine held its annual Best of Cleveland Party at Public Hall for over 1,300 party-goers. Our show had the honor of MCing the locally star-studded event. Overall, it was a good party, but it felt spread out because of the location. VIP was tucked deep in the basement away from the "real" party. There seemed to be a disconnect with so much ground to cover in such a short time.
It was great to see several friends at the party, but I would have much preferred The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame location instead.
As we often say in Cleveland; "Next year......"
So great to hang with my brother Ian at The Presidents Cup in Columbus. Theres nothing quite like sharing free cocktails in a private suite on the 16th hole as the worlds best golfers stroll by. Although brief, it was great to see Ian and share some much-needed laughs...
I cant believe it took this long for me to discover Mi Pueblo in Cleveland. I love Mexican food and this place is among the best in the area. It's hidden away off Euclid Avenue and has incredible fajitas. Of course, the key to a good Mexican place is the margaritas and chips and salsa. They deliver on both! I plan to put this place on my dining calendar many times in the future...
Im bummed out for Joe Thomas of the Browns. With all the changes this week with the team, it looks like another tough year of rebuilding. I hope Im wrong, but it sure looks that way. Joe is a hard working class act who deserves to go deep into the play-offs. I hope the team gets it together before we lose another great player....
Olly Murs gave a mind-blowing performance in studio at our show this morning! I have liked his music on the radio, but became a true fan today. This kid is amazingly talented, sharp and quite likeable. Hes the real deal and should be around for a very long time. Our live audience and listeners who called into the show echoed my thoughts on Murs. Im looking forward to seeing him in concert and cant wait to check out more of his music!
Ed Kowalczyk from "LIVE" will be at Kent Stage in Kent, Ohio Friday, November 15, 2013. Although I miss the full band, its always good to see him.
Its been a busy month of concerts!
The Train, Script, Gavin DeGraw show at Blossom was enjoyable from start to finish. It was cool seeing Train back in a venue where they belong. As a big fan of The Script, I loved seeing the crowd sing a long with several of the songs. We also enjoyed a pre-concert wine tasting with Train and hanging out with Gavin DeGraw before the show.
The Matchbox Twenty and Goo Goo Dolls show was loaded with hits. MB20 was just as solid as they were back in February in Akron. So cool to see The Goos again finally. Im a big fan and had not seen them since their House of Blues performance years ago. We attended the soundcheck for both bands and did the photo op thing. It was really great to see them again.
MAROON5 & Kelly Clarkson this week was HUGE! Loved hearing "Harder to Breathe" from MAROON5. Such a good song! Another highlight was "She Will Be Loved" during the encore. Kelly Clarkson nails it every time! We last saw her play that special show for Microsoft several months ago at Beachwood Place. Despite being the opener at this show, she proved she could have easily headlined at Blossom. Shes so good. She has so many hits! Without question, a great night at Blossom!
By far, this summer has proven to be the most adventurous golf season of my life! From the best shot I have ever hit, to completely falling apart on one of the most beautiful golf courses I have ever played. From my personal record number of golf outings to the many rain delays. My first league season to the many laughs with good friends. From cigars to chunked chips. Whiffed tee shots and a new driver. Hydroplaining a golf cart to one too many hotdogs at the turn. Its been a helluva ride this golf season and its not quite over. Could that elusive hole-in-one happen this year? Check out my new golf gallery in the picture section of the website. Some pix of some great holes I was lucky enough to play....FORE!!
I had an amazing time in Northern Michigan during my vacation this past week! My trip to Grand Traverse Resort in Traverse City and over to Sleeping Bear Dunes proved to be the perfect remedy to my much-needed time off. It was my first time experiencing The Dunes and it was as-advertised! The views are breathtaking and the beaches spectacular!
After weeks of struggling with chipping and putting, I finally put together a round in the 80s. Its the first time Ive gotten into the 80s in two golf seasons! This weeks 88 at Chippewa in Doylestown, Ohio was quite the adventure. I shot a 40 on the front with a well-rounded game. It seemed like everything was working. I was solid off the tee and got up and down routinely. It was one of those exciting days where you start thinking "What if?" halfway through the round. The challening back nine had me hanging on to the 80s for dear life. The infamous "TRIANGLE" sucked an 8 out of me on hole #15. From there, I held on to post a 48 on the back and secure my round in the 80s. When I look back on the round, it could have been better, but Ill take this as progress as I head into a great week of golf in Northern Michigan...
I spent Fathers Day Weekend with my daughter Gabrielle at Great Wolf Lodge in Sandusky, Ohio. We had a blast at the waterpark, the arcade and hanging out for a couple of days. It was much needed time with Gabs and a nice break from a crazy week.
As usual, golf season is off to an adventerous start. For the first time, I joined a weekly 9-hole golf league at Ellsworth Meadows. Although I havent put together a solid nine holes, I have hit my career-best shot. An uphill, 165 yard blind shot into the hole. Because of an errant tee shot, I had to settle for birdie on what should have been an eagle. None-the-less, it was the best shot I have ever hit. It beat out last years 140-hole-out at Sleepy Hollow in Brecksville.
This week, I begin a busy schedule of golf outings that will run into September. I have so much fun playing in outings and look forward to top last summers inconsistent play.
Im really looking forward to the upcoming concert season! Here are a list of concert dates of interest...
TIM McGRAW May 31 Blossom Music Center
DAVE MATTHEWS BAND June 1 Blossom Music Center
NKOTB, 98 DEGREES & BOYS TO MEN June 9 The Q / Cleveland, Oho
FLEETWOOD MAC June 15 The Q / Cleveland, Ohio
KENNY CHESNEY June 20 Blossom Music Center
KID ROCK July 2 Blossom Music Center
BON JOVI July 14 First Energy Field / Cleveland, Ohio
JUSTIN BIEBER July 13 The Q / Cleveland, Ohio
TRAIN, THE SCRIPT & GAVIN DeGRAW July 17 Blossom Music Center
JIM GAFFIGAN August 3 Akron Civic Theatre
JOHN MAYER w/ Phillip Phillips August 6 Blossom Music Center
MICHAEL BUBLE September 18 The Q / Cleveland, Ohio
PINK November 23 Quicken Loans Arena
JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE December 12 The Q / Cleveland, Ohio
Its been awesome to see the Cleveland Indians get off to such a solid start! The off-season moves are clearly paying off. Its been so exciting being at the ballpark for the walk-off wins and seeing them battle for first place!
I feel this team is capable of a 90-win season and contending for the division. I look forward to a great summer of baseball in Cleveland...
I finally had the chance to play Chippewa Golf Club in Doylestown, Ohio. The course is beautiful and has its share of challenges. Chippewa is both fair and challenging. There are many holes that offer better photo opportunties than birdie opportunities. I plan to play several rounds at Chippewa in the 2013 golf season...
Earlier this week on the show, we asked who has the best burger in Northeast Ohio. Several people called with many answers to the question. One that stood out, was the stuffed burger at Arts Pub in Fairview Park, Ohio. We gathered the crew and stopped by Arts Pub on Friday and loved it! Rocky let us sample several of his stuffed burgers. The Cuban was great as was my favorite; the cheese, bacon & jalepeno burger!
Arts Pub is comfortable, authentic with wonderful people and great food. I highly suggest you check it out...
I was very impressed with TAYLOR SWIFT when she played Cleveland this past week! She is a true professional who knows how to take care of business on and off stage. Before her show, I had the chance to briefly meet her backstage. She is taller than I thought and even kinder than she seems. She is a hugger and she takes her time when photo-oppin backstage. She was accomodating and genuine with everyone she met. After her meet-and-greet, she headed to her dressing room as her mom took over with a tour of backstage. It was one of the best backstage visits I have been a part of and it really went a long way with everyone who had the opportunity to be there.
Her show was full of hits and several thank yous to her fans.
Her mom told us backstage that she does not lip-sync. In case you were wondering, there were 11 costume changes throughout the show.
ED SHEERAN played a private performance at House of Blues for Q104 listeners before opening for TAYLOR SWIFT Thursday night. He is casually awesome! He is humble, low key and boy can he sing. He sings "live" as good as his recorded music. Im not sure he realizes how big he has gotten so far. He is real, appreciative and has a huge future ahead of him...
Despite the rain and cold on Saturday, Kelly Clarkson killed it at her Beachwood Place outdoor show! I have always been a fan, but seeing her live has made me an even bigger fan. She belted out all of her huge hits and even made time for a cover of FUNs / We Are Young. Check out the pix in the concert photo gallery...
Civilization in Tremont, Ohio is my favorite coffee shop in the Cleveland area. Best latte in the city and a great lil hideaway to find some peace. I often go there to work on the show...
OPENING DAY is one of my favorite days of the year! Baseball is back! A fresh start. A new beginning. A full ballpark, good friends and cold beer. This years Cleveland Indians team is full of intrigue. Not expected to, but good enough to win and surprise the baseball world. Bring on the Yankees! PLAY BALL!
TOMO Sushi & Hibachi in downtown Cleveland is quickly becoming one of my favorite places to enjoy sushi. It's a beautiful restaurant and the food is incredible! This spring / summer, I will be hosting a Friday after work party there. I will pass along the info as soon as I find out more. You gotta check it out...
St. Patricks Day 2013 was a blast! The day started with an appearance at The Clevelander in downtown Cleveland. From there, it was off to the parade to ride along with the Cleveland Animal Protective League. Over 13,000 marched in the parade and over a couple hundred thousand lined up along the route. After party stops included Beckys, Moriartys and Major Hoopples. Plenty of corned beef and too many Irish Car Bombs, Guinness, Jameson and good times! : )
BON JOVI returned to Cleveland last night for a two-and-a-half hour show mixed with new music and hits of the past. Overall, I liked the show, but it lacked that full-blown rock n roll vibe of BON JOVI shows of old. It was more of a carefully crafted concert that blended the old with the new. The band has reached that point where they have accomplished all they need to and now just need to show up and give the crowd what they came for; the songs they know and ten dollar beers. Releasing new music may not be the event that it used to be for BON JOVI, but the packed house proved they can still live off of their own history....
Its hard to believe Matchbox Twenty has been at it for 17 years! Sundays Matchbox Twenty show at Akron Civic Theatre was the best I have seen from them. The sold-out show was loaded with hits and backed upped with awesome lighting.
It was cool seeing "Shes So Mean" performed live from the new disc. It was equally fun to hear "Long Day" , "Disease", "Bright Lights" and "Push" from the early years.
My personal highlight from the show was "Back to Good".
Word has it that the band will return to Northeast Ohio for the second leg of the tour....
Over the past several visits to Cleveland, the venues seem to be getting smaller and smaller for Ed Kowalczyk. The House of Blues big room, The Beachland Ballroom and last night he played The Cambridge Room at HHOB. Im a huge fan of Ed and consider LIVE my favorite band of all-time, but I find myself longing for the days of the full band in larger venues. The solo project has been a treat, but its time to get the band back together before its too late.
Highlights from last night include I ALONE, LIGHTENING CRASHES, OVERCOME and I was pleasantly surprised by PILLAR of DAVIDSON. I also appreciated DAUGHTER segueing into U2s WITH OR WITHOUT YOU.
One of my new favorite sushi spots in Cleveland is TOMO Sushi & Hibachi on West 9th downtown.
The multiple-story restaurant/nightclub is gorgeous inside and the food is fabulous! The service is great too! I highly suggest you check it out if you love sushi!
PAUL REISER stopped by our show on Friday. I was a big fan of his show MAD ABOUT YOU back in the day and really appreciated having the opportunity to talk with him about it. He was very kind and very giving of his time. Im an even bigger fan today...
MOVIE 43 is quite possibly the worst movie of all time! I dont get offended easily, but this was low-grade comedy at its lowest. I was pretty much done with this film in the first ten minutes when there was a scrotum dangling from Hugh Jackmans neck. I knew I was done when they went into great detail involving poop and sex. Ive said plenty. There ya go. You have been warned....
GANGSTER SQUAD is really good. I have not heard much buzz about it, but its why we go to the movies. The movie is eye candy. Its a good ol fashioned gangster movie that captures the romantic look of the 1940s.
Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling, Sean Penn and Emma Stone are all fantastic in the movie. Its not the best gangster movie I have seen, but its good and worth seeing.
We had a lot of fun on the show this morning discussing the people in line waiting to order their coffee. Are you one of the people holding up the line??
1.The Chatty Senior- Getting locked into a conversation with a senior citizen is less than ideal.
2.The Friendly Regular- They will catch the barista up on all the latest gossip while 10 people are still waiting to make their orders.
3.The Stressed Parent- Kids dont care that its impossible to juggle coffee and a screaming child, and the will make the entire experience hell for everyone.
4.The High-Maintenance Customer- If your coffee order takes longer than 5 seconds, you are probably a terrible person. Your stressing out the barista, and worse, you are holding up the line.
5.The Uncertian Cardholder- After the holidays, a bunch of gift card recievers head in to the cafe to cash in their presents. The problem is that they have pockets full of gift cards and no idea how much money is on each.
6.The Dieter- Anyone on a diet is going to spend far too long calculating the calorie of their skinny vanilla latte and blueberry muffin.
7.The Undercaffeinated Addict- Coffee addicts tend to be grumpy, agitated, and sometimes too groggy to make a simple decision.
The year is off to a crazy busy start! I have hosted several events, visited a few schools, seen several movies, attended soccer games and its still only January!
This past weekend, I hosted a benefit for injured firefighter Ryan Leighty. Over 900 people attended including several firefighters. It was so awesome seeing so many people come together to help raise over $40,000 for his medical expenses. Everyone was so kind and had a great time!
I had a chance to visit Elyria Community Elementary School this past week! I had a great time talking with several third grade classes about how a radio station works. The kids were awesome and were fun to talk with. I learned more than they did! : )
The Angels for Kids Wine event in Amherst next month is a sellout! Its such a great cause and the event will be awesome! Im so excited to be a part of it!
I have officially signed up for The Winking Lizard 2013 Beer World Beer Tour. This will be the third year in-a-row in the quest for 100 beers and the coveted tour jacket...
My daughter turns 14 tomorrow. How did that happen???
SUPER BOWL Prediction: SF 27 Baltimore 17
DJANGO is PULP FICTION in the year 1858. Quintin Tarantino likes to kill lots and lots of people in his movies and DJANGO is no exception. The movie is quirky. But if you know Tarantino, you get it. If you dont, it will take you a few minutes into the movie to understand. The movie is good, but long.
BROKEN CITY. The weeks of movie trailers leading up to BROKEN CITY gave me a real thirst to see it. This is my kinda movie; action, corruption and Mark Wahlberg. It was ok, but I feel I will soon forget seeing it. I cant quite figure out what its missing, but its missing something. Maybe it wasnt glossy enough. Maybe I didnt quite believe the movie. But it was just ok. I give the movie a C and the trailer an A+.
If you like beer, you need to go to Fat Heads Brewery in North Olmsted. Without question, the best beer I have had in Northeast Ohio is a Bumbleberry from Fat Heads. Its liquid crack. Although I hear they have a great beer selection, I can never bring myself to order anything but a Bumbleberry...its that good! The End.
I went into ZERO DARK THIRTY thinking it would be a military movie where we already knew the outcome. It was that and so much more! I walked out of the theatre feeling I had seen a realistic account of what happened from start to finish in the ten year hunt for Osama Bin Laden.
Because the details of what really happened are still classified, its hard to say what was real and what was Hollywood, but the movie makes a responsible attempt to tell the story.
Despite the controversey regarding torture tactics to collect information, I have not heard anyone question the overall accuracy of the film. Kathryn Bigelow did an amazing job bringing the story to the big screen and Jessica Chastain deserves an Oscar for her powerful performance.
Producer Woody joins Fees Kompany in January.Coaching my daughters travel soccer team. Masque of the Red death Party. Completed the Winking Lizard Beer Tour. Michigan golf trip. Taking my Dad to NASCAR event. Attending PGA rournament at Firestone. Tom Papa interview. Playing golf with my Dad. Watching my daughter play soccer. The Breakfast Club playing my backyard party. Taking pix of Air Force One. Q104 move to new location. Chesney / McGraw concert. Tater Tots at The Feve. APL broadcast. The Winking Lizard golf outings. Little Beers. Taking my daughters annual fall picture. Jerry Seinfeld show. Wexlers. On stage with Guy Fieri. Taking my daughter to Cleveland Air Show. Front row at Red Hot Chili Peppers. St. Patricks Day Parade. My new basement/bar/workout room. The Valley Tavern. Columbus golf outing. Introducing my daughter to Victoria Justice. Black Keys concert. Seattle Seahawks surprise season. Dinner at Pickle Bills. Josh Cribbs New Years Party.
The 2012 concert season featured a little bit of everything...
The Black Keys: I was completely blown away seeing them for the first time at The "Q". Im late to the party, but damn glad to be here.
Huey Lewis: Everything was a hit. Good show from start to finish at Playhouse Square. Had a chance to meet him after the show.
Jason Mraz: Great musician. He put on a better show the last two time through town at Lakewood Civic and Tower City. He might be starting to believe his own hype too much.
Daughtry: Pure rock n roll show. Tons of hits. He knows how to be a rockstar.
Nickelback / Bush; I went to see BUSH. They were solid just like I remember from the mid-90s. Nickelback did the same show as last time. The hits. Loud. Too much time screwing around with the crowd.
Train: Good show. Not great. The true fans loved it. I thought they packaged up a neat lil concert and it was good. I like the band a lot. They were better at The Agora.
Andy Grammer at The Grog Shop early in the year was great. The handful of people at the show knew every word. He was great with the crowd.
Andy Grammer at The Q104AQ-stic Christmas was solid. It was a very good acoustic show at The House of Blues. Hes a talent.
Kenny Chesney / Tim McGraw at Browns Stadium: Both are amazing! Both are at the top of their game and were awesome! The hammered country bumpkin crowd made it that much more entertaining.
Our Lady Peace at House of Blues were great. One of my two favorite bands so I am quite biased. They were awesome. The End.
Red Hot Chili Peppers at The "Q": I got to sit front row at this one. That was great visually. Tough with the sound. They are a great band. I enjoyed it. Wish I had better sound from where I was.
Weird Al at The Akron Civic Theatre: Entertaining as hell. He puts a lot of effort into that show and the fans appreciate it. Glad I went.
A few thoughts on some of the movies I have seen recently...
JACK REACHER: I really enjoy Tom Cruise movies. This one is action packed with a great car chase in a muscle car. Its vintage Tom Cruise. Its why we go to the movies. Overall, it wont go down as one of his most memorable, but it has great entertainment value.
SKYFALL: Im a Bond guy and this is one of the best. Theres a reason this one is setting records at the box office. Daniel Craig is, what I feel, what the producers/writers had in mind when casting Bond. Adeles title track fits perfectly, the action is top shelf and the story is raw Bond. A must see..
LIFE OF PI: Kinda life Tom Hanks in CASTAWAY, but instead of a volleyball, its a Tiger on a boat. I liked it-didnt love it. The movie was probably was 30-minutes too long, but it was an interesting story that leaves you thinking at the end.
No longer in theatres...
PITCH PERFECT: Surprisingly funny from start to finish and the music is pretty good too. I realize I lose mancard points for admitting this, but it was good. Its intended for a younger (leaning female) demographic, but its entertaining and funny. My daughter says its her new favorite movie.
THE DARK KNIGHT RISES: I missed this in theatres in the aftermath of what happened in Colorado. But I finally had a chance to see it over the holiday break. Im not normally into superhero movies, but this turned out to be one of the best films of the year. Loved it from start to finish. Its as good as the last one for different reasons. Kept me hanging on the edge of my seat (couch) until the very end. A MUST see!
THE BOURNE LEGACY: With the departure of Matt Damon in the title role, I was worried about this one. But much like Daniel Craig as James Bond, Jeremy Renner took over and nailed the role. Although quite confusing in the early going, the movie tied together nicely at the end and made for a good watch. I like these kind of movies, so I will go easy on it. I can see how some might think of it as OK at best.
Movies I am looking forward to this month: BROKEN CITY, GANGSTER SQUAD, DJANGO, SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK
For the past two years, I was told that the best tater tots are in downtown Oberlin, Ohio at a place called The Feve. I recently had a chance to check out the place and hop aboard the bandwagon. The tots are incredible!! Some say its the multiple sauces while others suggest how they are prepared with a crisp and brown outer layer. Clearly, its both.
People get passionate about their tots, but I am convinced that if they try The Feve, they too will agree that the best are in Oberlin, Ohio...
Im looking forward to the new year. 2012 was an emotional roller coaster with plenty of ups and downs. There were many good times and life lessons along the way, but overall, a few too many disapointments and tears.
I always embrace the new year as a fresh start and look forward to accomplishing new personal and professional goals.
Ive always looked at each birthday as a number and a reason to have a party. This year, however, was different. I didnt have the big party I normally do and it seems more than just a number this time around. For the first time in my life, Ive given pause to my age and find myself being much more reflective and expecting more. This year, more than any other, I feel ready to take on the new year with a sense of purpose and energy. I am blessed in so many ways, but the mission is far from accomplished.
Im a firm believer that you get what you give. In 2013 I plan to give a lot, expect a lot and focus on what is truly important.
Happy New Year! My best to you and your family...
This years Masque of the Red Death Party was a blast! This is the third time I was given the opportunity to play the role of Prince Prospero at The Akron Civic Theatre fundraiser and I loved it! The costumes are always top shelf and you could not ask for a better venue for a Halloween party!
Each fall, my daughter and I venture out into the fall colors to find the perfect place to take our annual picture. Its become a tradition in our family to take a pic of Gabby each year during the fall. Its a great chance to spend time with her and its always fun to look back on the pix over the years. We took this photo at The Bedford Reservation MetroPark.
Finally I had a chance to check out PICKLE BILLS in Grand River, Ohio. I love those places that serve up seafood in buckets with lots of bread to soak up all the juice. The kinda place where ya get down and dirty with your meal. The kind of place where you need tools to get to the good stuff. PICKLE BILLS is that place. The atomsphere is fun with all kiinds of random things hanging from the ceiling and on the walls.
I definately plan to get back there soon! The rooftop patio looks like a great place to hang for a few drinks and a sunset.
Pickle Bills is located at 101 River Street in Grand River, Ohio.
It was great to catch up with comedian TOM PAPA! He is one of the best in the business and always a great guest on the show.
Interviewing comedians can be a tough task. If they dont take over the interview with their act, it becomes a game of hit and miss. Tom always reads the room well and becomes a natural part of the show. He is authentic both on and off stage. He is a naturally funny person who understands his craft.
I attended his show at Hilarities and was blown away how much material he had. i thought we may have heard most of the highlights on our show, but it was much more than that.
When Tom appears on our show, its guranteed that listeners will be entertained. I cant wait until he comes back.
This years Cleveland National Air Show was awesome! Seeing The Blue Angels never gets old and the displays were great! Check out some pix in the photo galleries section of the site...
Jason Mraz delivered another solid show at Blossom last week! Ive seen him several times over the past few years and he always puts on a good show!. I was particularly impressed when he played Cleveland three years ago at Tower City. It was a full-blown show with several musicians backing him up. This time around, he answered with more hits and a strong performance.
I have to admit, I have taken Christina Perri for granted. I have always thought of her as a one-hit-wonder. But after seeing her soundcheck and watching her open for Jason Mraz, I have a whole new appreciation for her and her music. She is a heartbeat away from becoming a household name with several hits! She has an amazing voice and she gives off the vibe of great things to come....
I enjoyed a few days off in Northern Michigan last week. I stayed at The Inn at Bay Harbor and enjoyed one of my favorite places to play golf. Bay Harbor has breathtaking views on the course and one of the best Bloody Marys I have ever had.
The trip also included stops in Traverse City and Mackinac Island.
It was great to see BUSH open for Nickelback at Blossom this month. The band sounded awesome and worthy of sticking around for a few years.
Im not a NICKELBACK hater at all, but I did feel the band came back to town and did virtually the same show as last time. Their performance didnt feel like a headlining perofrmance at all. They even did the same antics on stage with the T-shirt gun and such. The band was fine, but left me feeling "been there, done that".
The "Brothers of the Sun" Tour with Tim McGraw and Kenny Chesney was a slam-dunk. They are both pros who know how to throw a musical party. 51,000 people showed up at Browns Stadium for the show that lasted for several hours.
OUR LADY PEACE is one of my favorite bands. They played House of Blues Cleveland on July 27th in front of a packed house. It was a solid show. Good, not great. I left the show feeling there was something missing. It felt like the band went through the motions. It wasnt the passionate performance that I have seen from the band in the past. Overall, I love their music and it was great to seem them play all the hits..
I love cowboy hats. They are bad-ass! I like Garth Brooks, Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw. There, I said it...
I had a chance to check out ORIGINAL STEAK & HOAGIE this week. "Billy from Philly" has brought the taste of his hometown to Twingsburg, Ohio and its GOOD! His Philly Cheesesteak has attracted diners from all across NorthEast Ohio. Billy opened up the place a couple of years ago and had no idea it would take off so quick. He is the real deal and his food is authentic. I highly suggest you check this place out!
I really enjoyed guest-bartending at The Blind Pig this past Friday. Proceeds for the event benefit "Dress For Success"! Although it took some getting used to, I managed to pull of a "commercial pour" or two...ish...
This Friday, Ill be playing in "Dress For Success" golf outing at Signature of Solon. These people know how to have a good time and it should be quite the adventure...
Over the past week, I kicked off the summer golf season by playing three of my favorite courses in the area: Sleepy Hollow, Barrington and Aurora Country Club. Although the short game is far from mid-season form, Ive been pretty happy off the tee. A lot of work to do with the game, but Im looking forward to playing quite a bit this season. Im already booked for several outings and plan to branch out to several courses I have yet to play in the area....
I had front row seats for The Red Hot Chili Peppers this weekend! I love the band and it was cool seeing them up close. Because of the massive traffic downtown for multiple events, I missed the first few songs from the band. My personal highlights were "Under The Bridge", "Californication" and "Suck My Kiss".
Sunday wrapped up my first season as my daughter Gabbys U-14 Travel Soccer team. Despite the 1-7 win-loss record, I had a blast working with a great group of girls. The one win was more than the previous two seasons combined : )
I truly enjoyed getting back into coaching and appreciated every moment with my daughter and her friends.
Im hoping to coach again this fall...
What an exciting week for our show! We helped The Cleveland Animal Protective League raise over $120,000 with our 7th Annual Pledge For Pets RadioThon. The energy of everyone involved and the kindness of our listeners always blows me away. Of all the events we host, this is my favorite. Its so exciting to help people who truly deserve it. Im very blessed to do this for a living. Thank you to everyone who helped make the week such a huge success!
Noodlecat is THAT good!
I had a chance to attend a "pop up dinner" at Noodlecat this week as a guest of Chef Jonathon Sawyer and Chef Jason Roberts this week. The food was incredible! The pork-based meal also included a salad with a "kick" and several specialty cocktails. It was one of the best meals I have had in a very long time!
if you havent been there yet, you must check out Noodlecat. Its located next to The House of Blues in downtown Cleveland.
Our morning show crew had a blast in Akron over the weekend! We attended an 80s style party at The Akron Civic Theatre that was highlighted by Journey tribute band "LIGHTS". The Civic knows how to throw a party! We also had good times at "LOCKVIEW" across the street during the after-party! We usually all hang out at events that we host. It was nice to get out socially and have a great time together.
Im not exactly sure how, but tater tots became a big topic on our show over the past few days. The "LOCKVIEW" is fast becoming one of my favorite hang-outs in downtown Akron. They serve tater tots as an appetizer (big portion) and they are soooo gooood. After posting this pic on my facebook page, I instantly got over 100 likes. Its one of the most "liked" pics I have ever posted on my page. People agreed with me that tater tots belong on ALL menus as an appetizer. "HAPPY DOG" in Cleveland gives good tot as well. Start a conversation about tater tots and you will be amazed how people light up about them...
I had the chance to see Jerry Seinfeld at a sold-out Akron Civic Theatre over the weekend. Just like the last time I saw him at PlayHouse Square, he was hilarious. Hes every bit as good as he was during his popularity in the 90s. I have to admit, I was expecting old material to be worked into the show. Instead, he was very contemporary with his comedy and as funny as ever! Not to sound technical, but his transitions were flawless. His timing was dead on and the show ended with everyone wanting more. I laughed through the entire show!
I met Dick Clark fourteen years ago at Busch Stadium in St.Louis. He was in town to watch the McGwire/Sosa homerun race heat up that summer. A group of friends were invited on the field for batting practice before the game and thats where we met. He was exactly what you think he would be; gracious, kind and more than happy to chat with us and snap a pic. Like everyone else, I really liked Dick Clark. He re-shaped television and had a huge impact on radio. Watching the tributes this week made me really appreciate meeting him even more. His closest friends described him exactly as the "everyday person" that we all knew from TV. He will be missed.
This weeks Daughtry show at Playhouse Square was awesome! Just like his last trip to Cleveland, it was a kick-ass rock show jacked up with hits!
Victoria Justice from Nickelodions "VICTORIOUS" stopped by The IX Center in Cleveland this weekend. She met with several listeners at our Q104 VIP Party. I was impressed with how sincere she was and how much time she spent with everyone. She spent two hours signing autographs and taking pictures with everyone before heading up to the main floor to do the same for four more hours.
Sushi Rock has extended our Happy Hour promotion! I will be at the downtown location in The Wharehouse District on West 6th every Friday night at 5pm. The weather has been awesome! I hope you stop by for a lil sushi and a drink or two...
This weeks BLACK KEYS show at The "Q" in downtown Cleveland was awesome! It was the first time I had seen them play live and loved it! I went to the show liking a handful of songs and left a huge fan of the band.
The Q104 Four Legged Fashion Show was once again a big hit at The IX Center this week! Our dog Lucy helped model some of the latest four-legged fashions. The event is put on by The Cleveland Animal Protective League. Im looking forward to our APL Radiothon coming up in May!
For the past four years, I have stopped in for "THE REGGAE BRUNCH" at The ParkView in Cleveland. The event marks the birthday of Bob Marley and is held the Sunday after The SuperBowl each year. Its such a big deal for The ParkView, they actually have a clock on the wall counting down to the event each year. Its awesome spending a Sunday drinking Red Stripe beer and enjoying "live" reggae music.
I love city skylines! The view from The Viaduct high above The Flats is one of the best places to see Cleveland at night. Its also a great place to enjoy dinner or a cocktail. Its both casual and classy. I really enjoyed my first time there and look forward to coming back!
Happy Birthday to my Angel from Heaven. Lil girl is growing up fast. Its hard to believe that my daughter Gabrielle has become a teenager. Im so proud of who she has become and proud to be her dad. Have a wonderful day sweets. I look forward to sharing it with you.
As we get up to full-speed here in 2012, I cant begin to tell you how excited I am with our crew in the morning. We are changing the name of the show and have added some solid players to the cast.
Katherine Boyd has made a strong transition into Jen Tooheys spot (who moved to our CBS sister station). Katherine has brought a lot of energy to our show both on and off the air and is a news junkie just like me. We will compliment each other quite well and have plenty to talk about. Her background as a tv news anchor really helps. She lives, loves and breathes Cleveland. She is a mom, a wife and she knows how to light up a room and have fun.
Woody Justik joined the show this past week. He has been my best friend for over 20 years and we have worked in several states together. He has a great sense of humor and has already fit in with everyone on the show. Other than trying to end his LONG dating slump, he should be quite focused on producing the show.
Glenn is the veteran of the show, having done mornings on Q104 for nearly 15 years. For me, he is the anchor of the show. He offers so much as far as content goes. I rarely make a decision about anything on the show without him being fully on-board. His songs are hilarious and he always brings life to a conversation.
RedBeard has been a wonderful addition to our show. Hes smart, he is funny and he has a twisted sense of humor. Hes the only person I know who dresses as a pony, has multiple costumes in the trunk of his car whom I havent reported to the police.
I didnt expect so much change coming into the new year, but I embrace it and Im excited about it. This ensemble will have more to laugh about, be more energized and more authentic than ever before....
Im very pleased to announce that Kevin "Woody" Justik has joined the show as Executive Producer. I have known Woody for over twenty years and have worked with him at several radio stations around the country. He is first-class and will fit in nicely with our crew.
Trip to Niagra Falls. Spontaneous trip to The INDY 500 and sleeping in my car. Golf trip to West Virginia. Shooting my best golf score in years. New Years Eve with friends and family and Jell-O shots. Selena Gomez show with my daughter. Golf Outings. Witnessed a Hole-In-One. Saw my first no-hitter when Ervin Santa no-hit Cleveland. Meeting Mike Holmgren. Having "Angelos Pizza" in Lakewood, Ohio for the first time. FEE FEST44 at Hoopples. LEGO Fest with my daughter.My bad acting in "Masque of the Red Death" at Akron Civic Theatre. FOO FIGHTERS concert at The "Q". Meeting PGA Golfer Graeme McDowell. My daughter meeting her favorite golfer Rory McElroy. U2 show in Pittsburgh. USHER concert at The "Q". Hosting "ROLLING AT THE ROCK" at Sushi Rock with Browns players. NHSA Soccer getting recognized at conference. Jen Toohey and Glenn Anderson have baby boys. Katherine Boyd filling in on show. Morning Show brunch at Westside Market Cafe. "RedBeard". Celebrated "DYNGUS DAY" at The Parkview. "My Chemical Romance" show at House of Blues. Dressing as a giant groundhog and walking through ParmaTown Mall. Completing The Winking Lizard Beer Tour. New golf clubs. Finally seeing all the "Bourne" movies. Hanging on stage and backstage with Guy Fieri at The Fabulous Food Show. Travelling around NorthEast Ohio and creating a "Fall Colors" photo gallery. Mini-Westlake Bar Crawl. Attending my first Alice Cooper show and meeting him. Seeing Buddy The Cake Boss with friends and family.Taking pix at Tribe games. Lunch with my daughter on the patio at The TreeHouse in Avon, Ohio. "MARGARITA MONDAY". Playing fall golf at Firestone Country Club. Back-to-Back number ones.
1. The Descendants
4. Ides of March
5. Mission Impossible
6. Kill The Irishman
7. The Lincoln Lawyer
8. Hangover 2
10. We Bought A Zoo
Best Movie I have yet to see from 2011: The Help
Biggest Disappointment: Battle: Los Angeles
Honarable Mention: Hall Pass
Coolest movie I didnt quite get from 2011: Drive
Great Acting / Blah Movie: J. Edgar
Most forgettable Movie from 2011: In Time
Just a quick note to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! This year has gone by so quickly! I cant believe its Christmas already! xoxo
I stopped by BSPOT in Eaton Collection this week and enjoyed a PALO SANTO from Dogfish Head. It was one of the best beers I have ever had. Really enjoyed it and suggest you try it.
This year went by amazingly fast. I cant believe its already been a year since Jen Toohey joined the show. It seems like she was just getting married and now she is a new mom to her son Noah. Talk of Jens baby afforded us many funny moments on the show and gave our listeners the chance to share their stories of their children and the ups and downs of pregnancy. I really enjoyed going inside Jens womb during our "audio ultrasounds". To me, the bit was so bad it was good. In 2011, we also welcomed Glenn "The Funny Song Man" Andersons new son Cooper. Again, that led to more baby-talk and comedic good times. This has been the best year since I began doing the show nearly a decade ago. We laughed a lot and enjoyed some of our biggest success stories. In all, we had a lot of fun and gained two new listeners this year : )
I celebrated my 44th birthday on Saturday night at HOOPPLES in the Cleveland Flats. Thank you so much to everyone who came out and made it such a festive night!
I really enjoyed brunch at Luckys Cafe in Tremont this week. The service and food there is top notch. They can take a simple bowl of oatmeal and turn it into art. Their food presentation is among the best I have ever seen. I enjoyed "The Shipwreck" and one of the best cups of coffee I have had in Cleveland called "The BlackJack".
I had the opportunity to meet Browns President Mike Holmgren at todays Salvation Army Tree Lighting Ceremony. He was the featured speaker at the event I hosted at The Arcade in downtown Cleveland.
Finally! I had the chance to enjoy Angelos Pizza in Lakewood, Ohio this past weekend. I admit, it took The Plain Dealer naming it the best pizza in the area to get me to make the trip to the westside, but it was well worth it. Im finding that Cleveland has so many great restaurants, that my list of "best restaurants I am yet to go to", is getting longer and longer...
Some of my favorite pizza places in the area...
*Romitos in Independence
*Spennatos in Northfield
*Guidos in Chesterland
*Angelos in Lakewood
The Fabulous Food Show is a wonderful event for Cleveland. Our morning show has had the chance to be on stage with Guy Fieri during his last three shows at The IX Center. He is a one-man party and a total hoot to be around. Backstage, we spent a great deal of time with "Restaurant Impossible" host Robert Irvine and Michael Symon. All three chefs are great friends with one another and it shows on and off stage. My personal highlight of the show took place when Irvine accidently shattered a tequila bottle with a GIANT loaf of bread while trying to surprise Fieri on stage.
When I saw that Mens Health magazine had named DER BRAUMEISTER one of the top 20 bars in the country, I couldnt believe I had never heard of it. I stopped by for a late lunch and drinks with the crew and LOVED it! The service and atomsphere is great! They have over 140 beers and the food is awesome. Its located on Lorain and 130th in Cleveland. I highly recommend it and plan to be back very soon!
LEGO KidsFest at The IX Center was a blast! It drew huge crowds! I cant believe all the different things made of LEGOS! They had everything from Indiana Jones to Lightening McQueen made out of just LEGOS. Highlights included; Batman, Darth Vader, Buzz LightYear and Harry Potter.
Dante Boccuzzi has a new contemporary Japanese place in Tremont, Ohio called GINKO. Its hip, intimate and the sushi was mind blowing. The Shabu Shabu (you heat it at your table) was crazy good. On the drink menu, the Shiso Martini was one of the best cocktails Ive ever had.
The Akron Civic Theatre knows how to throw a Halloween party. On Saturday, it was the return of The Masque of the Red Death. It was the second time I had been asked to play Prince Prospero in the Edgar Allen Poe themed party and I had a blast....right up until I was killed at the end (again). Party goers were greeted by a headless horseman and enjoyed live music and dancing well into the night in the spectacular theatre. If you live in the Akron area, this is a Halloween must next year. The party is a fundraiser for The Akron Civic Theatre and AVANTinc.
I cant tell you how many times I have been asked about Parallax. I LOVE sushi and people always tell me its the best in town. Up until this weekend, it was the best restaurant I had never been to. Although I only had a chance to enjoy of couple of the sushi rolls, the food, service and atomsphere was as advertised. Ive only scratched the surface of Parallax and plan to return soon.....
After seeing the movie trailer for months, "The Ides of March" was exactly what I wanted it to be. A political thriller with sharp acting and a good overall look. The movie had that cool Clooney vibe from start to finish. The all-star cast nailed it. Although there is a lil more cast than movie, it has plenty of eye candy and political imagery to cover for the lack of whatever I cant quite place that its lacking. Despite the fact that ending will leave some hanging, I thought it worked. Overall, I liked it a lot.
I LOVE clambake season!! This past Saturday, I enjoyed, uh, four dozen clams with close friends at their clambake. I cant get enough! Clambakes are quite festive and I look forward to more this month!
Strip Steakhouse in Avon, Ohio is awesome! The food and service is always very good. This past week, I hosted their "Hangar 1" Vodka Tasting on the patio of The Clifton Barn. It was a perfect night. The weather was ideal as the fire burned on the patio. We enjoyed a wonderful food spread and sampled the vodka. Overall, I found the after taste to be a bit much for my liking. The people at Strip know how to throw a good party. I highly suggest you watch for their next vodka tasting in the months ahead.
Over the past three weeks weather has kept me off the golf course. I needed those three weeks to tune up to play Firestone South. Every year, I try to get in a round on my favorite golf course and top my best score there. It didnt happen. It was one of those rounds where nothing felt right. I spent the round trying to recover from 16 of my 18 tee shots. I found myself enjoying the fall colors and being thankful for being able to play the golf course. Ultimately, thats golf...
If I could change one thing about youth soccer, it would be less parent involvement. For some reason in our country, many parents seem to think its helpful to stand on the sidelines and bark out instructions. They tell their kid what to do every step of the way. "Kick it here", "Pass over there". They somehow think that it teaches the game. In reality, it distracts and takes away from learning the game and makes the soccer experience more stressful for the player.
If a parent wants to teach the game, become a coach. As parents, our job is to encourage our kids, not tell them their every move.
When I coached youth soccer, our coaches found that the less we talked to the players as they played the game, the better they played. We would coach the kids on the sidelines and prep them for going into the game.
Its been proven time and time again, that if you constantly yell out instructions during games, you wont get the best out of your player. Let them play. Let them be creative on their own. Let the coaches coach.
You dont tell your kids how to play with their toys, treat soccer the same way. Let them naturally develop. Much like you dont want someone hovering over you at work telling you what to do, your kid doesnt want you micromanaging their soccer experience....
The Foo Fighters are that good!
They are one of the best bands I have seen play live. Dave Grohl brings his "A" game EVERY show and makes it look effortless and amazingly cool while being silly the entire time.
Personal highlights included "Hero", "Best of You" and "This is a Call".
Its hard to believe they have been around for fifteen years. Its as if they are just getting started...
What I remember most about September 11th is how unified we were in the days and weeks that followed the horrible events of that day. We were all one in our grief and anger.
Our politicians werent Republicans or Democrats, they were our leaders.
We respected our firefighters, police officers and first responders. We rooted for New York. We rooted for the Yankees.
We appreciated our own lives and all that we have to be thankful for. We held our kids a lil tighter.
Rather than remember the ugly images of September 11, 2001, Im remembering what it truly felt like to be brought together as one.
Im usually an optimist about sports. I always believe my team will come through when they really need to. Or that they will outperform expectations. After yesterdays Browns loss to the Bengals, I have a lost a great deal of hope this season. Yes, its only one game. But it was against the team we KNEW we could beat. The schedule wont get any easier. It pains me to say, but I predict the Browns will go 6-10 this season...
When I threw out the first pitch at The Lake Erie Crushers game last season, everything went wrong. The toss, intended for somewhere near home plate, ended up trickling into the opposing teams dugout.
This year, lets just say the catcher caought the ball. Redemtion.
The Hooley House in Mentor, Ohio is a festive bar. Cant wait to get out there again...
This weeks ALICE COOPER show at Akron Civic Theatre was an all-out ROCK show. From the elaborate stage, pyrotechnics and energy of the capacity crowd, the show delivered on every level. It was awesome seeing the passion from the crowd and equally great to see how genuine Alice Cooper was after the show. He took two hours to sign autographs and take pictures with fans backstage.
What a difference a day makes...
I followed up the Alice Cooper show by attending the Tiffany / Debbie Gibson show the next night at House of Blues in Cleveland.
While Tiffany proved she can actually sing, Debbie Gibson put on the better show (although singing to a track).
We could have done without Tiffany covering Guns & Roses or adding a country feel to her cover of the Beatles "Standing There". But overall, her new music was good. She could possibly reinvent herself as a relevant country artist if she really wanted to.
Gibson used her flat stomach and dance routines to make up for any shortcomings.
As a huge golf fan, I always look forward to the PGA Tour stop at Firestone in Akron, Ohio. Its so awesome that the best players in the world play within a half an hour of my house.
I brought my daughter to the practice rounds on Wednesday and we met US OPEN champs Rory McElroy and Graeme McDowell along with Stuart Cink, Adam Scott and several others. Although Tiger Woods clearly drew the largest gallery, McElroy was clearly a fan favorite. Woods was pretty much untouchable at the event, but McElroy, McDowell and Darren Clarke were quite fan friendly. Must be an Irish thing : )
I was in Buffalo, New York this past week and had to stop by The Anchor Bar downtown for wings. I had been there once before and vowed to return every time I was in town. The Anchor Bar is known for the origional Buffalo Wings. The place has been there since 1935 and is just as much of a tourist attraction as it is a restaurant. Some say they are not the best wings in town, but as far as Im concerned, they were awesome! (Again).
Its hard to believe its been 20 years for the KRUSTYs party at Wendy Park on Whiskey Island. The benefit for Malichi House is a top notch throwdown that I have attended for the past few years. Carlos Jones and his band headlined the event. I usually tell people KRUSTYs is like having the lawn at Blossom next to Lake Erie. I LOVE this party and I love the after-party at Cropicana next door.
Fridays OAR show at Jacobs Pavillion at Nautica was good. The show featured music from the bands new disc and even a cameo from PGA Tour star Rickie Fowler. Fowler is in a fan of the band and is in town for the tournament at Firestone.
I took some time off last week to visit Niagara Falls and Niagara on the Lake. Although Niagara Falls has become even more of a commercialized tourist trap, Im still blown away by The Falls themseveles.
It was my first time at Niagara on the Lake and I really enjoyed it. Its beautiful there and made for a great getaway. The downtown, the wineries and our hotel were all top shelf. I look forward to spending more time there...
The set up for Tuesdays U2 show in Pittsburgh was unreal! It was HUGE! Like most U2 concert tours, the staging featured a walkway that enabled the band to get closer to the crowd. It also had a huge "roof" with a giant radio tower on top.
Highlights included "I Will Follow", "New Years Day" and "Mysterious Ways". The crowd joined in (as always) during "In The Name of Love". They closed the show with a double-encore that included "Where The Streets Have No Name".
Speace Shuttle astronaut Mark Kelley (husband of Gabby Giffords) pre-recorded a video from space that included U2 lyrics and a reference to Pittsburgh that got a great crowd response.
Overall, I loved the show. I have seen U2 several times and Im a fan. The show,however, did not equal their ZOOTV Tour show in Vancouver, Canada or their Madison Square Garden show in New York.
Despite the Tribe being on the losing end of yesterdays no-hitter, it was cool seeing history in person. Ervin Santana from the Angels made history by being the 25th man in major league history to throw a no-hitter and still give up a run. It was the 9th no-hitter in Anaheim history.
I really appreciated the Cleveland fans positive response to his incredible performance.
I took a few days off this week to play golf at Oglebay in Wheeling, West Virginia. I really enjoyed the resort and golf on the Arnold Palmer-desinged course. I shot my lowest round in 11 years (86) on the second attempt on the Palmer course. Its a gorgeous, fair, but challenging golf course. Ill definately be back....
I took my daughter to The Treehouse Gallery & Tea Room in Avon, Ohio for a Daddy/Daughter lunch earlier in the week and loved it! The food and service is top shelf and the intimate setting is perfect for a casual lunch. The portions are quite impressive (including dessert).
This weeks Katy Perry show at The "Q" in Cleveland was awesome! She put on a great show and had the hits to back it up. I found myself much more entertained at this show than I did at the Lady Gaga show back in April.
Personal highlights include "Firework" and a a switched up half-ballad version of "I Kissed A Girl".
I really enjoyed my round of golf at Manakiki this week. Although I struggled on the front 9 and had to clean up my score on the back, I really appreciated the greens and overall golf experience.
The crew at Sushi Rock put on "Sushi @ Sunset" as part of the Emerging Chefs series this week. Despite a venue change because of the weather, it was a wonderful evening with excellent food and good people. The portions were small, but they made up for it with quality and endless sake : )
SNLs Jay Pharoah came by the show on Thursday. He is quite possibly the best impressionist we have had on air with us. He does Eddie Murphy, Obama, Christopher Walken, Will Smith and tons more on demand. Find him on YouTube and you will have hours of laughs. He was very cool in person and a great guest. Hes at Hilarities all weekend....
This weather is killing whats left of my golf game. Fridays latest weather blast bounced me off of the back nine at Boulder Creek. Its a tough course in the first place and even tougher when its cart-path only. Managing your golf clubs while trying to tackle a difficult track can be brutal. Storms have cut short four rounds of golf so far this season....
Weather also hampered The Lions Club two man scramble I particpated in on Thursday at Valleaire. My partner and I were unable to get anything going and stumbled to a VERY disappointing +1.
Earlier in the week, I shot a season best 94 at Sleepy Hollow in Brecksville, Ohio. That round was highlighted by a personal best shot ever. I holed out from 130 yards with a pitching wedge on the par 4 fifth hole.
I have been blessed with a wonderful Dad. He is a good man. Hes funny, smart and knows how to have a good time. I owe so much to him; my sense of humor, my bad golf swing : ) and a blessed childhood. I Love you Dad, thank you so much for everything and Happy Fathers Day....
The moment I became a father was the happiest moment of my life. On Saturday, January 30th, 1999 at 1:11pm Gabrielle was born.
This Fathers Day, I am thankful for my "Angel From Heaven". Above all else, being Gabbys Dad is my greatest blessing. She has made my world a much better place and I cant begin to explain my love for her. I love you Gabs. It is a very happy Fathers Day.
Judah Friedlander is hilarious! The "30 ROCK" star who plays "Frank" on the show stopped Friday morning to promote his weekend visit at Hilarities 4th Street Theatre. The self-proclaimed world champion had me laughing the entire time. Check out the podcast at www.Q104.com
SUPER 8 is "ET" meets "Predator". I dont think it lives up to its billing as the summers best movie. Yes, its Steven Spielberg. No, its not as good as many of his movies that helped shape a generation. Its just ok. After seeing the movie trailer, I had to see what happens. I found myself emotionally un-attached to the characters and not rooting for any particular outcome. I would wager that, somehow, this story is somehow connected to Spielbergs own childhood as a young filmaker. The problem is, only he knows why...
Ray LaMontagne played a near packed house Thursday night at Jacobs Pavilion. It was my first time seeing him in concert and my expectations were high. Overall, I enjoyed the show, but was disappointed he didnt perform "Be Here Now". Thats one of my all-time favorite songs and couldnt wait to see it live.
I love patio season. There are so many great places to hang out in Cleveland during the summer months. I have to admit, Im a lil late to the party, but REDDSTONE at Battery Park is an instant favorite hang. Ive been there a couple of times and LOVE it! The service is great and the food is fun. The nacho app is among the best in town. The duck pizza, was quite good too! The atomsphere is perfect for a chill night. Theres an outdoor bar along with dining on the patio. Inside, theres an awesome vibe too. This is clearly one of the best bars in the Cleveland area.....
CILANTRO on Main Street in downtown Akron is one of the best sushi deals in NorthEast Ohio. The presentation, service and overall atomsphere is well worth the price!
On Sunday, I helped host the Vince Ruby benefit for pancreatic research at Chrissie Hyndes VegiTerranean in Akron. The event featured several regional bands who performed on a perfect day on the patio stage. I met several awesome people and was quite impressed with the musical line-up.
I really enjoyed Junkman, Robin Stone, Electric Temple and 7 Oclock Chicken.
Finally a chance to get out and play some golf this week!! On Saturday, I played Ellsworth Meadows in Hudson, Ohio. I love the golf course and was pleased with its condition after so much rain. It was nice to not have to be limited to cart-path only golf and not getting blown off the course by the crazy weather we have been experiencing. The new clubs feel good. Getting off the tee much better with the new driver. The putting practice has paid off. Now, if I can just get all the clubs figured out between the driver and the putter, all should be fine this season...
Im looking forward to Wednesdays outing at Stonewater.
On Saturday, my friend Kevin and I decided to make a spontaneous last minute trip to The Indianapolis Motor Speedway for my first-ever INDY 500 race.
When you roll spontaneously, things like hotel reservations get in the way of a good time. Upon arrival in Indianapolis late Saturday night, we attempted to get a room in a few hotels and failed miserably. With 400,000 people expected in town for the race, getting a hotel room seemed less likely than a Browns SuperBowl win.
We decided to head to the track and sleep in my car for a couple of hours. Although the conditions were less-than-ideal, we found a great parking spot and arrived early.
I was blown away by how HUGE the track really is. Much bigger than it appears on tv. I was also very surprised to see how amazingly fast the cars are actually going. TV doesnt do the sport justice.
I had a total blast at the race! Despite getting a speeding ticket on the way home, I consider the trip to be a success.
There will be those who say HANGOVER 2 isnt as good as the first one, but it probably is. The only reason "2" doesnt live up to the first one is the lack of shock value. The first movie took us on a comedic ride and shocked us every step of the way. The second one follows the same formula, but this time, we are ready for it. We werent surprised by the movie, we were expecting what we got.
HANGOVER 2 is good. Its funny. It lives up to the brand. They follow the plan that worked for the first one.
Guy Fieri is a rockstar.
His show on Sunday night at Playhouse Square was a bigger, more produced version of his IX Center visit at The Fabulous Food Show. Honestly, I cant quite remember what he cooked up, but it was a good time! With his closest friends on stage doing most of the cooking, he told stories about his career and filled the down-time with bloopers from his tv shows and crowd-pleasing music from a DJ high above the stage. Everything from Neil Diamonds "Sweet Caroline" to "Sweet Home Alabama" kept everyone fired up.
With the exception of the actual cooking, this is the show that Charlie Sheen should have done....
The second-ever "Asian Festival" took place this past weekend in downtown Cleveland. The event featured some of the best Asian cuisine in the area and brought in a sizeable crowd. It took place outside the Asian Plaza at 30th & Payne. I was very impressed overall and look forward to watching the event grow into a Cleveland tradition.
No, Louie Anderson is not the guy who does the Chinese food bit where they say "YOU LEAVE NOW!!" Hes the former host of Family Feud and long-time comedy veteran. It was great to catch up with him on the show on Friday and later see him Saturday night at Hilarities.
Its great to be at Cleveland Indians for more that just a couple of beers and a hot dog. This team is for real and the fans are slowly starting to figure it out. I was at Fridays "Battle of Ohio" opener and loved it! This team is finding ways to win. Saturdays sell-out crowd saw another win and on Sunday, The Tribe blew out the Reds to complete the sweep!
The "BELIEVELAND WINDIANS" (no typos), are for real. This is going to be a fun summer....
REDDSTONE is an awesome bar with a fabulous patio. I need to go there more....
The Q104 Pledge For Pets RadioThon is my favorite event of the year! I cant tell you how proud I am to work for a radio station that dedicates itself to helping such a worthy cause. The Cleveland Animal Protective League is made up of passionate people who deserve our support. They perform mini-miracles every day on a non-government funded shoestring budget.
This year, we helped raise over $125,000 during radiothon. Although I am disappointed that the number is down from last year, I am more than confident that The APL will put the money to very good use. Thank you to everyone who helped with the broadcast and thank you to everyone who donated!
This weeks USHER show at The "Q" was awesome! It was the first time I had seen him in concert and I was blown away! Seeing the show live helped breathe life into songs that I was taking for granted on the radio.
BEER FEST at The IX Center was a blast! Where else can you enjoy such a HUGE selection of the finest beers all under one roof?? I ran into several friends at Saturday nights session and had a great time. I loved how they set up The IX Center as a giant bar with big banners guiding us on a beer tour by region. I have to admit, the Ohio beers were quite good!
Dont let people who dont care about you ruin your day. ~ Lou Holtz
My mother Maureen is a wonderful woman. She has a huge heart and would do anything to help anyone. She is often the life-of-the-party and always knows how to have a good time. My Mom has a great sense-of-humor and has been a great wife to my Dad and awesome Mother to my brothers and me. Without question, she has been the most powerful influence on my life. I love you Mom! Happy Mothers Day.
I spent most of Friday afternoon at Hope Academy West talking to students about reading, radio and several other random topics. The students, ranging from 1st to 8th grades and faculty made the day a lot of fun.
Despite losing control of the first and second graders at the assembly while reading Dr. Suess "The Places You Will Go", I found our visit to be a success. : )
We had the chance to tape an interview with USHER late Friday morning. We asked him about his involvement with The Cleveland Cavaliers, Justin Bieber and his upcoming show on Thursday in Cleveland. The interview will air Monday morning at 7:15.
I had a blast working alongside Newschannel 5s Andy Baskin at "Rollinig at the Rock" Friday night in Beachwood. The event, put on by The Cleveland Browns Scott Fujita, was a benefit for "The Littleist Heroes". It featured several Browns players including quarterback Jake Delhomme.
The sushi, as always, was amazing and the crowd was awesome!
The new "LIZARDVILLE" is a "Beer Store and Whiskey Bar". Its located on the site of the origional Winking Lizard and located next to the current Winking Lizard on Miles Road in Bedford Heights.
Its casually classy with an awesome bar and great patio. Its a place to find the best hand-crafted beers and enjoy an amazing whiskey selection.
I had a chance to attend their "soft" opening this past week and will later host their grand opening later this month.
What a treat to see Edwin McCain at Kent Stage this past week!
The intimate show had a story-tellers vibe and was perfect for Edwin and his music. Between his hit songs, he told stories about his three kids and musical travels. It was as if he had stopped by to play in your living room.
That setting also provided an opportunity to show how gifted a singer he is.
I had visited the venue last year to see Marc Cohn. Seeing a show there makes me wish more major acts would play Kent Stage.
If you are a "Little Monster", you loved Lady GaGas show in Cleveland at The "Q" last week. Despite being a repeat of her last trip through town, every song was a huge hit and had a music video-like stage show to back it up. You felt like she was bleeding your fake blood. You believed her every time she said she loved you....
If you were a concert goer checking out GaGa for the first time, you may have been put off by her making you wait an hour-and-a-half before her show started. You may have questioned whether or not she was lip-syncing through her heavy-duty dance routines. Despite her carefully placed comment "Some people think I lip sync my tv and stage performances...I dont, Im just that F-ing good!", you still think she was lying.
Overall, I found it to be an impressive show. I liked it. I didnt appreciate the ego-baed pre-show delay and didnt buy it when some suggested she was talking to her sick mother (she had a simliar delay in Columbus, Ohio).
The first-ever Dyngus Day this past Monday was awesome! The Polish holiday marking the end of Lent was borrowed from Buffalo, New York and appears to have found another home here in Cleveland.
Organizers from The Parkview, The Happy Dog and Reddstone did an excellent job putting the event together despite tha massive rainstorm.
The Polish St.Patricks Day is a must-attend next year...
I hope you have a wonderful time with your family and friends this Easter weekend! From my family to yours, be@peace.... ~af
The weather this spring has been brutal for our soccer league so far! Rain, cold and wind have made the opening two weeks quite the adventure. Our soccer academy has been a mud-fest while wind and rain have caused all kinds of scheduling issues for our travel teams.
In Aurora last weekend, a soccer goal literally tumbled and rolled over several times in heavy winds.It wasnt properly anchored in the horrible conditions. Many people dont realize how dangerous a soccer goal can be. In this instance, no one was hurt, but it could have been a lot worse.
Spring soccer has always been questionable with the unreliable weather conditions. We are hoping by late next week the weather will actually resemble spring...
Ive been waiting on the sunset
Bills on my mindset
I cant deny theyre getting high
Higher than my income
My incomes breadcrumbs
Ive been trying to survive
The glow that the sun gives
Right around sunset
Helps me realize
This is just a journey
Drop your worries
You are gonna turn out fine.
Oh, youll turn out fine.
Fine, oh, youll turn out fine.
But you gotta keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
You gotta keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
I know its hard, know its hard,
To remember sometimes,
But you gotta keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
Ive got my hands in my pockets,
Kickin these rocks.
Its kinda hard to watch this life go by.
Im buyin in the skeptics,
Skeptics mess with,
The confidence in my eyes
Im seeing all the angles,
Starts to get tangled
I start to compromise
My life and the purpose.
Is it all worth it,
Am I gonna turn out fine?
Oh, youll turn out fine.
Fine, oh, youll turn out fine.
But you gotta keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
You gotta keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
I know its hard, know its hard,
To remember sometimes,
But you gotta keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
Only rainbows after rain
The sun will always come again.
Its a circle, circling,
Around again, it comes around again.
I say only rainbows after rain
The sun will always come again.
Its a circle, circling,
Around again, it comes around
But you gotta keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
You gotta keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
I know its hard, know its hard,
To remember sometimes,
But you gotta keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
Keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
Keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
Keep your head up, oh,
And you can let your hair down, eh.
I said ohhhh no no no no
The MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE show Sunday night at House of Blues in Cleveland was one of the best concerts I have seen in a long time. From start to finish, the band was awesome. The crowd was jam-packed in GA and totally into EVERY song. MCR are origional and have awesome stage presence.
Too many people are thinking of security instead of opportunity. They seem to be more afraid of life than death....
Dinner at ANATOLIA CAFE in Cleveland Heights on Friday night was good, not great. The atomsphere is comfortable, but something was missing. The sampler appetizer and stuffed cabbage entree lacked a lil something. I hesitate to call the food bland, but it could have used a spicey kick.
Perhaps my expectations were high because of the recent write-ups about ANATOLIA CAFE or maybe I needed to make a more adventerous menu choice.
Producer Nick has left our show to pursue his musical dreams with his band "Vitium" and his solo project "Nicholas Wonder". Nick has been my producer for nearly 8 years and has played a major role in building a winning morning show on Q104.
We met Nick as a young college grad with a band. Today, he is the frontman who can write a killer hook with a very bright future.
My favorite memory of Nick took place in Hollywood at The American Idol Finale. We had travelled there together to broadcast live from The Kodak Theatre. At the after party, we met Nigel, who produces the show. Nick told Nigel that he wanted his job. At the time, it was funny. Today, its not that far out of reach.
Check out Nicks new website at www.nicholaswonder.com and follow him on twitter @nicholaswonder1
The Spring Travel Soccer Season started this week. My daughter Gabby scored a goal in her teams 4-1 win. I love watching her face after she scores. Shes so happy and loves it....
After a long winter of waiting, I finally had a chance to break out the new golf clubs on Saturday and play in the first golf outing of the season! I played in a 3-man scramble at CopperTop in Valley City, Ohio where we finished 7th in a field of 36 teams.
Our team score was a combinied -4 on a course that was set up like mini-golf. I have to admite, I was disappointed in what they called "fun" pin placements. It was more like putting into the volcano than "real golf". Overall, I enjoy CopperTop, but those pin placements were ridiculous.
My new driver and Titlelist clubs feel good. I hit the ball well and feel like this will be my best golf season in quite some time...
The reason to not take things personally is to understand that what people say about you is a reflection of them & not you. ~Deepak Chopra
There are several good shows coming to NorthEast Ohio this Spring and Summer. Here are some highlights...
May 13 SUGARLAND with Matt Nathanson as opener
June 4 PHISH
June 23 Kenny Chesney
July 8 Rascal Flatts
July 15 Toby Keith
July 19 Jimmy Buffett (SOLD OUT)
August 2 Journey, Foreigner and Night Ranger
August 24 Def Leppard and Heart
August 12 Tim Mcgraw
April 15 RUSH
April 27 Lady GaGa
June 4 Josh Groban
June 14 GLEE "live" on stage
July 27 NKOTB & Backstreet Boys
June 8 Ray Lamontagne
August 14 Selena Gomez
July 5 Katy Perry
July 9 Sade with John Legend
July 21 Keith Urban
Charlie Sheens visit to Cleveland was exactly what you would expect. A one on one interview filled with catch phrases, rants and randomness. It was a toned down version of everything you have seen on tv. A near capacity crowd Tuesday night at Playhouse Square was sold t-shirts, treated to Emilio Estevez stories and whatever came to Charlies head at the time.
About a third of the crowd was all-in. They were loaded, yelling from their seats and nearing double-digits in cocktails. The rest of the crowd seemed to be there just to see what might happen.
If you were hammered, you LOVED this show. If you were sober, you left the theatre wondering how many brain cells you lost and why you paid to see it.
The national media called his Cleveland show a huge success. If you consider the fact that he completed the show without getting a Detroit-like beatdown, he was no doubt "winning" in Cleveland...
Despite frigid temps and a rough loss, I enjoyed my tenth straight opening day in Cleveland.
After pre-gaming at the downtown Winking Lizard, it was off to the newly formed "Social Suite" at Progressive Field. The suite is intended for fans who blog and tweet about The Tribe.
With Opening Day, there is hope that this years team will out-perform what the so-called experts say about this years Indians. I feel The Tribe will exceed expectations, but will need everything to fall into place and get a few lucky breaks. I have to admit, I was shaking my head when the team fell down 14-0 at one point during the game. It felt more like the movie "Major League" than the actual Indians. But as they finished with a 15-10 loss (more like a football score) , I concluded that maybe this team really can score some runs and wont give up just yet.
Baseball is back. Now we just need the weather to have its version of "Opening Day".
Buddy "The Cake Boss" is a ROCKSTAR!
Sundays sell-out crowd at The Akron Civic Theatre was more than excited as he came out to Def Leppards "Pour Some Sugar on Me". The 2,500+ fans were on their feet as he entered the building through the crowd with high-fives and hugs
Buddy has excellent rapport with the audience and connected with them throughout the night with stories about making cakes, his travels as a baker and, most importantly, his own family.
The 7pm show ended at around 9:20pm. With hundreds of fans waiting after the show, Buddy stayed to meet each and every one of them. He didnt leave the theatre until 11:45pm when he was done taking pictures and signing autographs with EVERYONE who wanted one.
He is authentic and that is why he is the best at what he does.
ROMITOS in Independence, Ohio is one of my favorite places to enjoy a very good piza! On Friday, I added black olives to my usual sausage, mushroom and pineapple. Today, I add several more minutes of cardio to my workout....
What if you could take a pill that would give you "Limitless" possibilities? One that would help you see things more clearly and give you the energy to reach beyond your potential? That is the premise of the movie "Limitless".
I kept waiting for this movie to go bad and it didnt. It was good, not great. I might be tough on it only because I had seen "Lincoln Lawyer" and "Kill The Irishman" in recent days. "Limitless" didnt reach that status, but it was good.
Bradley Cooper and Robert Deniro make "Limitless" work. They give strong performances. I recommend it, but feel its currently the third best movie in theatres.
Matthew McConaughey gives one of his best performances in "The Lincoln Lawyer" and is backed up with a great cast! Its a swagger-filled legal thriller with plenty of twists and turns. I enjoyed this movie from start to finish and highly recommend it.
I admit it; I probably said "Top o the mornin to ya" way too many times on the air in the morning, but overall, this years St. Patricks Day was a good time.
What a great day for this years St. Patricks Day parade in downtown Cleveland! The weather was great and everyone on our show had a blast as our "infamous" float travelled the crowded parade route.
After the parade, I stopped by Hoopples in The Flats for a traditional Irish meal that would make my Belfast-born mother proud.
"Kill The Irishman" is a very good movie. But it probably wont get the credit it deserves for telling the Cleveland-based true-story of Danny Greene.
Ray Stevenson, who plays Greene, stopped by our show this past week and told us the movie was filmed in a handful of weeks in Detroit to better capture the run-down look of Cleveland in the 70s. The film is quite convincing in its portrayal of the city as it peppers in several local references.
Also included to lend credibility is actual tv news coverage at the time that helps piece together the story. Christopher Walken and gangster-film must Paul Sorvino make appearances in "Kill The Irishman" to help add credibility to the film.
Ive already read reviews that the movie isnt as "sexy" as most mob movies, but I dont think its supposed to be. The movie is rough and raw and is played out at the street-level of the Cleveland mob wars.
I highly suggest seeing it. If you are a Clevelander, its a must.
I dont normally like movies like "Hall Pass". You know the type, the kind of movie where the lead guy has been in several movies that were kinda like it before and they throw in an SNL actor to make it feel funny....
Well, despite that, I laughed at "Hall Pass". Yes, its a bad movie, but it was good at being bad. Throughout the movie, I laughed...a lot.
Maybe its because its based on what really happens in suburbia or maybe its because of the handful of shock-value scenes that had the theatre rollin.
Either way, Im glad I saw it and had a few good laughs. Now, please dont tell anyone I saw it and liked it....
I liked the Justin Bieber movie. There, I said it.
Im not saying I have "Bieber Fever", Im simply saying that I appreciate his story. He lived up to "Never Say Never". He followed his passion and he is now living his dream.
I was pleasantly surprised with how positive the movie was. Hes much more talented than he gets credit for musically and he truly is a great performer.
Parent should take their kids to this movie to show you really can live your dreams despite what the critics and haters say. As a music fan, I appreciated seeing the behind-the-scenes.
Simply put, "Battle: Los Angeles" is "Predator 9".
When Governor Arnold finally leaves office, he will get around to making this movie.
Despite being number one at the box office, I gotta believe the movie will trail off pretty quick. The trailer was better than the actual movie. It moved quicker and looked more exciting. The story focuses on a small group of soldiers rather than aliens vs the world.
There are several ridiculous and very unbelievable moments in "Battle: LA". Most noteably, when they kill one of the predator-like creatures and find time to perform an impromtu autopsy to see where they should aim when shooting at them.
Then spend a lot of time developing characters whos names you will forget when the credits roll.
I visited OTANI in Hudson, Ohio for the first time this week and was blown away with an amazing sushi experience! The intimate and casual setting was awesome and the sushi was out-of-this-world!
I highly suggest that you ask for Christopher and let him decide the menu.
Charlie Sheen isnt really winning. I was actually entertained by Miley Cyrus on SNL. Why is it that I couldnt stand watching Star Jones on The View, but Im glued to the tv when she is selling pizza on "THE APPRENTICE" with Gary Busey, David Cassidy, Jose Conseco, some country guy, Dionne Warwick and Meatloaf?? Holding out hope that Bachelor Brad choses Chantel O. despite the internet rumors saying otherwise. If you watch "The Adjustment Bureau" as a romantic thriller, youll be less disappointed. Is it golf season yet? Already bummed about baseball season. When coming close to .500 is the goal, its hard to get excited. Cant wait for THE MASTERS on tv in a couple of weeks. Sunny and 19 is better than cloudy and 35. BATTLE: Los Angeles looks outta hand. I need a jumbo beer and a good concert.
I really enjoyed Friday nights high school hockey game between Gilmour and Shaker Heights on The Kent State Campus.I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of hockey between the two teams and loved the passion in the stands. Gilmour won the game 4-0 and advanced to "The Frozen Four".
Do we control our own destiny? Or does someone or something decide our future?
On the surface, "The Adjustment Bureau" looks like one of those movies where there are evil forces putting the Earths future in peril. In reality, "The Adjustment Bureau" is a romantic thriller where the only thing that matters is if the boy gets the girl.
After seeing the movie trailer for months, I was more than excited to see it. I expected more drama, more conspiracy, more INCEPTION-like and more life and death action....but in the end, "The Adjustment Bureau" cleans up well as a love-story and is worth seeing in a theatre.
"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didnt do than by the things you did." - Mark Twain
Today is the 107th birthday of Dr. Seuss.
My favorite all-time book is "The Places You Will Go!".
I have read the book to my daughter countless times and often read it on the most challenging of days.
Although it appears to be a kids book, I think much can be learned by people of all ages after reading it...
The Plain White Ts played an intimate "Coffee Shop" performance for us on Friday afternoon. About 25 people enjoyed the performance at Ante Up studios in downtown Cleveland. PWTs are quickly becoming our station house-band. This is the third time they have played a similar concert for us. They played four songs and signed autographs for everyone who braved the elements to get there.
"GNOMEO & JULIET" was Toy Story good.
Its one of those kids movies that has plenty of entertainment for adults.
My daughter and I both loved it!
BEST PICTURE: The Kings Speech
BEST ACTRESS: Natalie Portman / Black Swan
BEST ACTOR: Colin Firth / The Kings Speech
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Hailee Steinfeld / True Grit
BEST SUPORTING ACTOR: Christian Bale / The Fighter
BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM: Toy Story 3
Its "Restaurant Week" in Cleveland. Several of the top restaurants in town are offering very good deals to give business a spike. Each day this week, we have invited a restaurant in-studio to help promote the event.
One of my favorites, SUSHI ROCK, stopped by with an incredible spread! They do a nice job with presentation and their rolls are HUGE! If you have not tried SUSHI ROCK, they are located on West 6th in downtown Cleveland, Beachwood and in Columbus, Ohio.
Their half price sushi night (Tsunami Night) is Wednesday.
UNKNOWN is my kinda movie. Suspence thriller with international spy stuff. For months I had seen the trailer for the movie and couldnt wait to see it.
I liked it. I didnt love it.
I thought the movie tried a lil too hard to have a bunch of fancy twists and turns. At some points, I found myself thinking "wait a minute, how did he get another cell phone so quickly and where did he get those seemingly endless amounts of cash to pay for things???"
In the moment, I enjoyed seeing UNKNOWN and would most likely recommend it. But before you see it, make sure you have seen all of this weeks OSCAR nominees...
I admit it. This time of year is making me crazy again! Ive never been one to blame the weather on my mood. In fact, I walk slowly in a good rainstorm. But here I am in full hybernation mode. Dis-connected. Un-inspired. Blah.
Here is an email I received after todays show:
"Just happened to catch your show this morning (2/17) so sad, you all must be so proud of making fun of an 18 year old girl (Miley). Bullies"
This week, Billy Ray Cyrus told GQ Magazinie that Disney, Hannah Montana, The Devil and just about everyone else ruined his familly. In doing so, he placed a great big comedic target on his back. He opened himself up for an onslought of comedy that shows like ours prey on. Hey Billy, you are a one hit wonder with a bad mullet andbillioinaire daughter who made you rich and famous instead of a VH1 one and done special.
In the fake world, we were armed and ready with fake parody songs, one liners and bad comedy. We had "Duelling Banjos" on stand-by waiting for the next TMZ story to break....
In the real world, I find myself attacking the behavior. Where was dad during the photo shoots. Hey Miley, what were you smoking? Hey MaMa Miley, whats got you so jumpy?? (Thanks for getting the musical reference some of you)
I had the chance to sit down and talk to Miley one on one for an interview a little over a year ago. It was before a packed house of tweeners saw her Miley Cyrus/Hannah Montana Tour. She wanted nothing to do with the young people who got her there. She had her much older boyfriend and was not fully-present during her meet and greet with her fans. She was dismissive. You could see that she was blowing through to get to the other side.
Too bad she got there so early.
What a crazy week with the show! Since dressing as a giant groundhog just days ago, this past week has been quite the adventure!
We hung out with Mariel Hemingway, hosted a fashion show for dogs, talked with JWOWW from Jersey Shore, chatted it up with "TABOO" from The Black Eyed Peas and I got ordained as a minister on-line so I could re-new the vows of several of our married listeners at a bowling alley.
Never a dull moment...
It was a trip down Lovers Lane, literally.
Our show re-newed the wedding vows of several listeners on Valentines Day this week at Bay Lanes Bowling Alley in Bay Village. Our goal was to spread the love in a unique way and we succeeded!
Late last week, I became an ordained minister on-line. Our ceremony included several vows that were musically based. Glenn-The-Funny-Song-Man sang a heart-felt (and comedy-filled) version of "Tonight, I
Celebrate My Love For You" to round out the event.
I plan to spend the next several days trying to not be struck by lightening...
To hear the actual ceremony, check out the podcast on The Toohey & Fee page at www.Q104.com
I attended my third straight "Reggae Brunch" at The Parkview in Cleveland on Sunday afternoon. The annual event is held the Sunday after The Super Bowl as a tribute to the late Bob Marley. It was a great afternoon of drinking Red Stripe, eating VERY spicey food and outstanding music from Carlos Jones and his band...
Theres a reason GUY FIERI showed up to The Parkview in Cleveland; The food is outstanding and the place defines what his Food Network show is all about.
Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives featured fish tacos on the show. I had a chance to enjoy them Saturday night at The Parkview and loved them! It had been awhile since I had them and forgot how great they really are. If there is one problem with the menu at The Parkview, its deciding what to actually order!
Without question, the BEST place in Cleveland to enjoy a beer is The Winking Lizard. The selection is top shelf, the service is great and the man behind the beer knows his stuff.
I have had the opportunity to get to know John Lane from The Winking Lizard. He hand picks EVERY beer on the huge menu. He travels around the country and around the world tracking down the finest in beers. He knows his stuff and we get to enjoy his work all over Northeast Ohio at the many Winking Lizard locations.
Recently I enjoyed "Kentucky Bourbon Beer". It may sound novelty, but it is the real deal. If you are not sure what to try, I highly suggest you check out "The Paddle". A flight of beers that is quite enjoyable.
The Monty Python Cristo at Brewsters in Twinsburg, Ohio is OUTSTANDING!!! There, I said it....
Comedian Jimmy Shubert did our show Friday morning. By the time he left, I had laughed so hard that I had to see his stage show at Hiliarities Saturday night. His appearance on our show only scratched the surface. He was hilarious. Im still laughing about it. I cant wait to have him back on the show, Ill be much more prepared and it will be much more entertaining. He has a website, check him out!
Like most young broadcasters I had to pay my dues to establish my career. Ive done everything from broadcast from a fast food drive-thru, sleep overnight atop of a billboard to raise money, sit in dunk tanks and host a Miss Dairy Princess competition without laughing.
So here it is years later and Im still paying my dues. On GroundHog Day this past week, I was dressed in a giant chipmunk suit trying to pass it off as a Groundhog at ParmaTown Mall.
As "PARMATAWNEY FEE", I was shocked how people went out of their way to not look at me. It was as if they pretended that I was not there. If I saw a grown man dressed as a giant chipmunk, I would assume he was armed and ready to rob a bank and take cover....
We posted a video of our "adventure" on The Toohey & Fee page at www.Q104.com
Although there has been little buzz about "The Company Men", I was excited to see the movie because its storyline was taken from todays headlines and it had a strong cast.
Overall, I thought the movie captured the essence of the state of Corporate America, but it just didnt go anywhere. It gave a snapshot of how downsizing effected a handful of people at different levels of the nations financial struggles, but it didnt conclude much.
Ben Affleck, Tommy Lee Jones and Kevin Costner all give good performances. But I wanted more. It was a heartbeat away from being a 60 Minutes story. It need a lil Hollywood to spice it up.
If you like Ben Affleck, go see it. If you work in Corporate America, youve already lived it.
I saw Lyle Lovett and John Hiatt perform together this week at The Akron Civic Theatre. It was the first time I had seen either in concert and I enjoyed it. It was a low-key show with each taking turns to play their hits. Im convinced that "The Civic" is one of the best venues in NorthEast Ohio.
Every January 30th is a reminder of the greatest moment of my life. My daughter Gabrielle was born 12 years ago today at 1:11pm. I was so happy and cried the happiest of cries. I knew I had been blessed with an Angel from Heaven.
On this, her last not-teenage birthday, I wish her the bestest of days....
I LOVE you Miss Gabrielle.
I love going to the movies. But at first glance, a period piece about a guy with a stuttering problem giving a speech with accents and instant Oscar buzz didnt quite seem like my cup of tea. It sounded like it would be a tad hoity toity and only be shown in one of those theatres where everyone who goes shares the same political views and drives a Saab.
Im so glad I gave into the hype. Its a wonderful movie told brilliantly (trying to use an English smart word). Its a simple story really. Man has problem and tries to fix problem. The unexpected King has to give one of the most important speeches of the century and has to overcome great odds to do so.
The Kings Speech is the most satisfying movie I have seen in quite some time. As the closing credits rolled, I had a huge smile on my face. This movie will pleasantly surprise you considering what you know going in.
Well done lads.
Sakura in Brecksville, Ohio keeps getting better.
Its not my favorite sushi restaurant in the area, but its convenient to where I live and I love sushi.
With every visit, every meal seems better than the last one I had there.
Its foolish to to keep doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. In 2011, I have vowed to apply that concept to every aspect of my life....including golf.
I have a strong love for the game of golf. It is one of my passions. I have played since I was a kid and watch it on tv every weekend.
For the past several years, my game has been the same. I fiind myself struggling to stay in the 90s, always pushing the ball to the right off the tee and depending more on luck than actual skill.
This year will be different. For the first time in well over a decade, I bought new clubs. I was fitted for a new set of Titleist irons and Titleist driver. I hope to improve my putting with my Medicus over-spin putter. I also plan to spend a lot of time on the driving range and practice greens.
My scoring goal has always been to equal my Dads 77. I also have been chasing the elusive hole-in-one so I can check it off the life-list.
This year will be different. Ive already started to make changes. I wont be doing the same thing over and over again and I will be expecting much better results...
Im not normally into Westerns, but "TRUE GRIT" kept me interested from start to finish. In fact, it was Jeff Bridges performance that made the movie worth watching. Hailee Steinfeld gave such a strong performance as fourteen-year-old Mattie Ross, that I forgot that Matt Damon and Josh Brolin were even in the movie.
My first thought as I left the theatre was that I had just seen "Little House on the Prairie" on steroids.
Overall, "TRUE GRIT" is worth seeing on a cold January day.
It really bothers me when people take things way too seriously. Especially when they are offended by something clearly intended to be funny. Why come down on someone who is trying to bring a little laughter to the world.
Watching Ricky Gervais host The Golden Globe Awards was awesome. He was funny. Not Leno-safe monologue funny...but instead, the kind of funny that takes our own thoughts and puts them out there. While hosting that show, Gervais targeted anyone and everyone. Referring to Bruce Willis as Ashton Kutchers dad was priceless. Poking fun at the Hollywood elite or those who had well-documented infamous moments was hilarious. It kept the show real. Most importantly, he was naturally funny. We need to be able to laugh at ourselves more.
This past week, I hosted an event to help raise money for The American Heart Association. The event was held in a popular bar where the bartenders put on a show making drinks as I auctioned them off to the highest bidder. I made fun of and with the people bidding. Everyone seemed to be having a great time. The event was a huge success and we raised a lot of money.
The next day, my boss forwarded me a complaint email from one of the people who attended the event. She had written down several moments where she was offended by what I had said. Everyone, including the event organizers, seemed to have a good time and there was plenty of laughter. Rather than just host a charity event, my goal was to entertain people and make them laugh. For just about everyone in the room; mission accomplished. There will always be someone who doesnt get it or takes things way too seriously. I would rather take that risk. Im glad Ricky Gervais takes that risk at a much higher level.
The more comedic chances you take, the more you run the risk of offending someone. We need more Ricky Gervais comedy. We need to laugh at ourselves and be allowed to laugh at others without such a short comedic leash. My wish is for people to judge on the intent rather than getting caught up in their own self-inflicted seriousness.
Live. Love. LAUGH!
BLACK SWAN is very good. Just dont ask me why..because Im not sure I can explain it. The movie is much smarter than me.
Natalie Portman gives an obvious award-winning performance and the movie keeps you fully engaged from start to finish. The task is trying to connect the dots between SWAN LAKE and BLACK SWAN and deciding what is real or not.
During the closing credits, I knew I had seen one of the top movies of the year. I had more questions after seeing it than before. I have since turned to the internet to fill in my blanks and quickly learned I am not alone. Most people seem to really like BLACK SWAN and have their own theories on what they saw. There are many questions that need answered and most suggest they could be found by seeing the movie again. Having said that, I will suggest that the movie is so good, you must see it twice.
We talked with KEVIN JAMES on the show Friday about his new movie "The Dilemma". The Ron Howard directed movie that stars Vince Vaughn, Winona Ryder and James is getting killed by the critics. The Plain Dealer gave the movie an "F".
I have had a few listeners check in who have seen the movie already, and they say they loved it!
James told us on Friday to expect lots of twists and turns and that the movie is not what you think. It has just as many serious parts as it does comedic moments....
Maybe Im a dreamer
Maybe Im misunderstood
Maybe youre not seeing the side of me you should
Maybe Im crazy
(Maybe Im crazy)
Maybe Im the only one
(Maybe Im the only one)
Maybe Im just out of touch
Maybe Ive just had enough
Maybe its time to change
And leave it all behind
Ive never been one to walk alone
Ive always been scared to try
So why does it feel so wrong
To reach for something more
To wanna live a better life
What am I waiting for?
Cause nothing stays the same
Maybe its time to change
Maybe its hopeless
(Maybe its hopeless)
Maybe I should just give up
(Maybe I should just give up)
What if I cant trust myself?
What if I just need some help?
Maybe its time to change
And leave it all behind
Ive never been one to walk alone
Ive always been scared to try
So why does it feel so wrong
To reach for something more
To wanna live a better life
What am I waiting for?
Cause nothing stays the same
Maybe its time to change
And maybe its time to change
And leave it all behind
Ive never been one to walk alone
Ive always been scared to try
And maybe its time to change
And leave it all behind
Ive never been one to walk alone
Ive always been scared to try
So why does it feel so wrong
To reach for something more
To wanna live a better life
What am I waiting for?
Cause nothing stays the same
Maybe its time to change
Cause nothing stays the same
Maybe its time to change
To promote the upcoming Backstreet Boys / New Kids on the Block concert on July 27th at The "Q", our promo department came up with the idea for our air-staff to re-create the poster promoting the show. A creative idea that also includes a brief behind-the-scenes video of the shoot.
The picture, that appears to the left, was taken as a series of indivdual shots that were later pieced together.
As we learned, size does matter.....because the photos were snapped individually, the sizes varied a little more than they do in real life. For example, Glenn (who appears to the far right) is actually taller than me (in the center) in real life. In the photo, I appear much taller. To my right in the picture, both Kory and Tim appear much smaller than they actually are. Now, I acknowlege Im a pretty big guy, but not THAT big in comparison to my co workers. We had a great time talking about this on the air and several of our listeners offered hilarious commentary, mostly at my expense.
We had a blast during the shoot and look to do more creative things like this in the future on our website.
The story of Ted Williams has certainly captured the hearts of people around the world. Days ago, he was homeless on the streets of Columbus, Ohio looking for his next meal. Today, he has appeared on more national talk shows than Kate Gosselin! The Today Show, CBS Early Show, Jimmy Fallon, Leno (next week) and so on...
The focus has been on his amazing "radio voice". Its the ultimate voice perfect for anything. Hes the ideal announcer with that voice. Kraft has already picked him up for an upcoming football game...but its not THE VOICE that has captured our hearts-its his story. He has connected with us.
The former Cleveland DJ fell on hard times and turned to a life of drugs and alcohol. Hes the father of nine children who just wants to get his life back. All he wanted to do was get his life back on track and connect with his 92 year old mother. You didnt tear up when you heard him turn on THE VOICE and do those radio intros and announcements, you cried when he told his story....you connected. You rooted for him. You smiled. Its the FEEL GOOD story of the year.
Being on the radio isnt about having a big booming voice that sells mac and cheez. Its not about introducing talk shows or talking up the ramps of oldies....its about connection. Knowing and connecting with people. Its about real life.
As broadcasters, we sometimes forget this (myself included). The best broadcasters are authentic, passioinate, real. They connect because their audience relates. Yes, a great voice is awesome-but its what you do with it.
My hope is that Ted Williams is given a stage where he can take his golden tones and connect with people on air. Hes been given a gift AND a second chance. If given the forum to share his story, he will do us, and him, a great service. I hope he isnt limited to just selling boxed meals and meaningless voice-overs.
Its NOT the voice...its the story that needs to be told by the man who lived it. Its the story that needs to be told by Ted Williams on the air during HIS show...not by all the media outlets trying to capitalize on his new (possibly only) 15 minutes of fame...
New Years Eve was spent with good friends and a couple of good cigars. It was a great start to a year that I look forward to. The table is set for many good things to happen in the year ahead and Im more than ready to get on with it...
Although 2010 was a tough year overall, there were highlights. Jen Toohey joining the morning show this Fall and my trip to Seattle in July topped my personal highlights in 2010. Here are some random highlights from the past year: Throwing out the first pitch at The Cleveland Indians game on Cinco de Mayo. Taking my daughter to The Jonas Brothers/Demi Lovato show. Michael Jacksons father, Joe Jackson, stopped by our studio on the one year anniversary of MJs death. The Ed Kwolczyk show at The Beachland Ballroom in September. Attending the BROWNS win over the Patriots at The Stadium in November. Going on stage with The Food Networks Guy Fieri. Talking with Mark Wahlberg about his movie "The Fighter". Playing in several golf outings this past summer. Doing the weather in-studio at 19 Action News. Attending Jen Tooheys wedding. My daughter Gabrielle and I watching my wife Susan run her first marathon in Akron. Watching The Cleveland Orchestra perfrom Carmina Burana. Hosting The Masque of the Red Death party at The Akron Civic Theatre. The birth of my brother Ians daughter Emerson.
I met several new friends this past year and laughed a lot. Those times were much-needed and provided some of the best highlights of the year.....
Im looking forward to 2011. A fresh start. A positive outlook. A new beginning.
When I look back on 2010, it was a year of loss, disappointment, failure and negativity. Normally, I am a person who believes the glass is half full, but this past year was challenging in so many ways.
My wife Susan lost her father during the summer. He was a wonderful man, great father and loving grandfather to my daughter Gabrielle. He was a true hero to many and his loss will be felt for a very long time.
There wasnt enough laughter in 2010. Our morning show went through its first co-host change in seven years. Although I am more than pleased with the addition of Jen Toohey to the show, the transition was long and difficult.
On the air, it was tough to find things to laugh about without leaning negative. The County Corruption scandal, "The Decision", the scandals, the economy, the oil spill and the negative news stories swirling around Cleveland made it hard to be fun and funny. Cleveland seemed to earn top honors on EVERY negative list that Forbes Magazine printed. It felt like we lived in the poorest, fattest, crime-infested city in the country. It was more about cynical and angry.
On a personal level, I failed at many goals. Although I enjoyed the trip, I failed to complete the Seattle to Portland bike ride. Falling short on day two. Overall, I fell short on my fitness plan by a lot and need to re-focus in the year ahead...
In sports, whatever I rooted for lost. Yes, its only a game-but over time, it takes a toll. Its never good when you lose interest in your passions....
I dont plan on sitting around complaining about the shortcomings of 2010. Instead, I plan to approach 2011 with a more positive outlook and come up with a better overall game plan. Bring on the new year, Im ready...
Im very happy for my brother Ian and his wife Michelle on the birth of their daughter Emerson!! The baby has a bright future with wonderful parents... Im glad everyone is healthy and doing well. : )
Dinner at Viengs at Crocker Park in Westlake was wonderful! I had never been there before and loved everything about it. The environment is cool, the sushi was terrific and the service was top-notch. Ill definately be back...very soon.
I cant remember my daughter being more excited about Christmas than she has been this year. She was up and ready at 5:15am this morning. We sent her back to bed only to have her wake up again at 6:32am. By then, we agreed that it was time.....
It took moments for Gabs to establish the gift-giving rotation and to set her plan into action. It was the happiest I had ever seen her on Christmas morning.
Wearing half pajamas and half new clothes, she plans to spend the rest of the day playing with her new gifts. "I like today a lot" she told us...mission accomplished...
I think its safe to assume that Yogi Bear will not win an Oscar this year. Disappointed in the movie overall. Not sure why they took the time to make it 3D. With so many generations of fans, they had the opportunity to make Yogi Bear into a fun movie for all ages and a mass appeal hit. Instead, they limited themselves by gearing it toward kids under 12.
It was a very emotional morning for me to listen to your show today. First off let me thank you for visiting with the children at the Cleveland Clinic yesterday. My beautiful 14 year old boy Vince was diagnosed with Leukemia on September 3rd and has spent much of these last three months inpatient at the Clinic due to the harsh side effects of his chemotherapy treatment. We were fortunate to bring him home for Thanksgiving although he could not eat the meal he so loves we were together. At the time of your visit Vince was in the outpatient Clinic receiving more chemotherapy. It is our wish that Vince remains home for Christmas but this afternoon his temperature is creeping upwards signaling that he may need to be admitted to be treated for infection. Our four younger children are all battling an ordinary North East Ohio bout of sniffles but for Vince with no immune system to fight for him, a head cold could mean yet another hospitalization. Being a parent who spends so much time on the pediatric cancer unit I know how much the patients, families and staff must have appreciated your visit. My son Vince is an adolescent, struggling with becoming independent of his parents but needing to rely on us now more than ever. The adult in this man-boy tells us quite often how much worse he thinks it is for the very young children he is hospitalized with and sees during outpatient treatments. He is filled with sorrow to see children who are not old enough to understand what is happening to them suffering. Vince has received many generous gifts from friends, family and strangers. When he received an anonymous gift of cash he purchased several toys he knows his seven year old brother and four year old sister love playing with. He gave them to the Clinic staff to gift to any children they came across who simply needed to receive a gift that day. There was the true meaning of Christmas for me. When I feel overwhelmed and sorry for myself I think about my son Vince and how he looks beyond his own suffering to recognize it in someone else. I didnt think I could call and share my story with you on the radio today but wanted to let you know how it touched me to hear of your visit. It put a smile on Vinces face when I told him that some of his friends at the Clinic had a visit from Santa Fee yesterday. Your visit was meaningful to anyone who loves a pediatric cancer patient and heard about it. Hold your own children close and have a very Merry Christmas and what our friends and family are calling a VinceStrong New Year.
Visiting The Cleveland Clinic yesterday put this Christmas season into perspective for me. It can be so easy to get caught up in our day-to-day lives and take what we have for granted.
After meeting with a handful of kids who have cancer, I am reminded of how blessed I am and how much we need to shine our lights on others.
While dressed as Santa, I asked the kids what they wanted for Christmas this year. Each of them gave the exact same answer; "I want to go home". These kids and their famiies will be spending the holiday and many days to come at The Clinic. Hoping. Praying.
My thoughts and prayers are with these kids as they fight the ultimate battle and Im thankful they helped provide me with some much needed perspective. Please say a prayer for them and their families.
After talking with Mark Wahlberg on the show earlier this week, I was more than excited to see his latest movie "The Fighter".
Without question, its a strong contender for movie-of-the-year and Christian Bale is likely to win best supporting actor.
The movie is raw and feels authentic. Although I am not a big boxing fan, I found myself caught up in the story.
Although "The Fighter" will get challenged by the huge number of family holiday releases at the box office, it is a must see before Oscar night...
FAVORITE MOVIE: "The Town". Ben Affleck was awesome and a great story.
FAVORITE SONG: Bruno Mars "Just The Way You Are". Even after all the air-play, I still LOVE the song.
FAVORITE PERSONAL MOMENT: My failed bike ride from Seattle, Washington to Portland, Oregon. It was quite the adventure with two awesome friends.
FAVORITE PROFESSIONAL MOMENT: Jen Toohey joining the morning show. She has been such a great addition to our show both on and off the air!
FAVORITE COMEDIC TARGETS: LeBron James, Larry King, Dick Goddard and the County Corruption scandal.
FAVORITE INTERVIEW: Mark Wahlberg and Elderly woman in Akron who was vicitim of crime
FAVORITE EVENT: Hosting The Masque of the Red Death at Akron Civic Theatre
I Love my job!
This week, I dressed as "Santa Fee" visiting a school in Broadview Heights, chatted with Mark Wahlberg about his new movie "The Fighter", hosted "Snow Days" on the JumboTron at Progressive Field and did the in-studio weather on 19-Action News.
Every day is a new adventure. I cant wait until next week....
Jen Toohey and I will be doing the weather on WOIO Channel 19 in Cleveland tomorrow morning. We are teaming up with Jen Harcher and Jason Handman between 5-5:30am....
"The Tourist" is pretty good. From the start, it doesnt take itself too serioulsy. The storyline is good enough with the movie relying on the eye- candy provided by its stars and Italian scenery. Angelina Jolie is stunning and appears in almost every scene.
It wont win movie-of-the-year, but overall I think its worth seeing...
Katie Melua is an artist that you should check out. I first heard one of her songs in the movie "The Tourist" and loved her voice. Check her music out on youtube.com
"The Closest Thing to Crazy" is probably her best song. "No Fear of Heights" is the song featured in "The Tourist".
Jen Toohey and I stopped by The Melting Pot in Rocky River for lunch on Friday and LOVED it! The service was fabulous and the food was spectacular.
The lobster and duck were sooooo good! The suggested 07 Frogs Leap Cabernet provided the perfect touch to a fine meal.
Dessert was completely outta hand as we seemingly had EVERY item on the menu dipped in chocolate!
The rest of the weekend will be spent on the treadmill......
My daughter Gabby had a blast at Snow Days at Progressive Field Saturday afternoon! She tubed down "The Batterhorn" and skated around "The Frozen Mile". I even managed to interview her on The JumboTron. I really enjoyed having her there while I was working the event. It was a wonderful Gabby/Daddy day for us...
Im looking forward to hosting SNOW DAYS at Progressive Field again this weekend. Ill be there Friday evening after 6pm til 10pm and again on Saturday from Noon til 2pm. Its an awesome event for all ages. Hope to see you out there!!
My Canadian friend Kevin introduced me to FORTY CREEK WHISKY a couple of months ago and surprised me with a bottle for my birthday this week. It is outstanding! Very smoothe. He tells me its only available in Canada. Yet another reason to keep the passport updated......
Those who know about BEST GYRO in Northfield, Ohio have tasted an amazing gyro. Those who dont, have not. Just sayin...
A very special thank you to everyone who attended my 43rd birthday Friday night at Hoopples! It was so awesome to see so many of my good friends get together and have such a great time!
Thank you to Norm at Hoopples and Producer Nicks band "VITIUM"!!
"Santa Fee" makes his debut Wednesday night at Londricos Tree Farm in Valley View, Ohio. This will be the first time he has ventured out into public. He made his radio debut last Christmas on the morning show.
Santa Fee will will arrive at 5pm to the annual tree giveaway. Each year, Q104 gives away 104 Christmas trees to listeners who arrive early.
I met Cleveland Indians Manager Manny Acta Saturday at "Snow Days" at Progressive Field. We did a brief interview on the Jumbotron after he had tubed down "The Batterhorn". He is quite personable and always has a smile on his face. I look forward to talking more with him when he is a guest on "Good Company" on WKYC Channel 3 tomorrow at 10am. I am guest-hosting with Andrea Vecchio.
I always enjoy hosting the show on "Black Friday". The day after Thanksgiving always brings out the crazy shoppers who provide entertainment for us on the radio. From the moment we started at 5am this morning, the phones were rocking with the outta-hand-deal-seekers sharing their tales of agony, defeat and the pursuit of people watching.
One woman explained that she witnessed a brawl involving 70 people and that police were on the scene. Another caller talked about how an ambulance needed to take someone away from a Target store.
"Black Friday" gives shoppers the opportunity to later say, "Grandma, I got this just for you...and I had to kick two other shoppers in the forehead to get it...."
Our "Back Friday" show also afforded me the opportunity to debate my wife Sue (who was filling in for Jen) about Real vs Fake Christmas trees. I was surprised how evenly divided our audience was on the topic. My daughter Gabby also sat in on the show this morning.
For me, Thanksgiving is an emotional time. I find myself getting quiet and reflecting on what was, what is now and what can be. As I approach my 43rd birthday, I have so much to be thankful for and so much left to do....
2010 has been such a rollercoaster emotionally. So many ups and downs.
Today, I am counting my blessings and thankful for all that I have. I am blessed with wonderful friends and family and the opportunity to do what I love....
Im looking forward to co-hosting "GOOD COMPANY" on Monday morning. I always have a good time with Andrea, Fred and Michael on and off the air. I laugh a lot on the set. The entire crew is a blast to work with.
Cleveland Indians manager Manny Acta will be among the scheduled guests on the show. Im looking forward to meeting him for the first time and talking with him about The Indians future.
"GOOD COMPANY" airs Monday morning at 10am on WKYC Channel 3.
It never ceases to amaze me when people call into our show and tell us anything and everything. The TMI rules dont seem to apply when they tell us their deepest secrets.
Today, we asked, "What is your Thanksgiving drama?" We had several callers who called in, but two of the calls really cracked me up.
One caller explained that her Mother-in-Law called her to ask that she not bring her kids to Thanksgiving at their house. The caller explained that she had good kids, but her Mother-in-Law just didnt want kids at dinner. They could not find a babysitter on such short notice and decided to stay home.
Another caller was invited to Thanksgiving at her in-laws. But they were asked to pay $18 per person! I guess Thanksgiving is big business....
I cant wait for Mondays show.....
Since seeing the trailer for THE NEXT THREE DAYS, I couldnt wait to see the movie. Apparently, I was the only one. It had the worst opening week for any movie released this year. They literally spent $30Million dollars to market the movie and it hasnt worked....uh..yet....
Russell Crow is very good in THE NEXT THREE DAYS and the story is pretty interesting. Because of the accent and the type of movie, I thought I was watching a chunky Mel Gibson at times. They really do sound the same!
I also had an interest in seeing the movie because it was filmed in Pittsburgh, a city I know very well. (No, Im not a Steelers fan).
Overall, I was entertained and got caught up in the story. Although it was a good movie in the moment, Ill probably forget that I even saw the movie.
How cool would it be to fill in for Regis and co-host with Kelly Ripa! ?!?!
Here is the info they posted on their website. Our listeners can vote by clickig on the link below...
Live! With Regis and Kelly are on the lookout for your favorite male radio personalities to co-host with Kelly for a day on their hit morning talk show.
Did we mention you can win cool stuff just be nominating? Nominating enters you to win a Krups home appliance gift package valued at $500!
Nominee must be nominated by a home listener who must provide the name of the nominated Broadcaster, the call letters, city and state of the station where the nominee works. If possible, please include a web address or link to picture, biography, video or audio clip.
For all the talk and joking about Jen Tooheys wedding, I have to admit, I sincerely loved every bit of it! The wedding was picture-perfect! The Toohey family and friends know how to have a good time and are a wonderful example of what a family SHOULD be. I really admire her parents. They are authentic people who know how to laugh and live.
The ceremony at the historic United Methodist Church in University Circle was beautiful. I truly enjoyed being apart of the day.
Finally the big day is here!! Im so excited for Jen Toohey and Nate Lyons on their wedding day today. I have known Jen for ten years and its awesome seeing her so happy. Her fiance Nate is a great guy who is a perfect match for Jen...and her family : ) My best to everyone! I look forward to joining you all on your special day!
When 1996 Olympic Gold medal winner Dominique Moceanu invited the show out to dinner along with her husband Mike, we had no idea we were going to have an Olympic-sized meal.
We literally ordered EVERY roll on the Sushi Rock (Beachwood) menu. I admit Im notorious for my record-setting sushi perforamances in the past, but this time, I had nothing to do with the order. In fact, I wondered how we were going to even come close to finishing.
The five of us fought to get through a lil over a third of the way through the ocean-like portion. The effort was likely worthy of a bronze medal at best..... : )
When The Food Networks GUY FIERI called into our show last week, he was promoting his appearance at The Fabulous Food Show at The IX Center. He answered "104 Seconds of Random Questions" and even invited us on stage during his appearance. We had asked since he was gracious enough to have us on stage with him last year.
Who knew he was kidding when he told us to dress in 70s attire?????
I had attempted to dress as STARSKY from Starsky & Hutch. As Guy was quick to point out, it was more like porn star Ron Jeremy. Unfortunately, I think he was right. Glenns bright orange "Huggy Bear" costume was also met with a lot of bad comedy.
Overall, we had a blast. Guy is so much fun on and off the stage. The huge crowd LOVED him. He is a full-blown rockstar!
It sure felt odd attending my first LeBron-less Cavs game of the season last night.
The good news is that parking is a little easier, the lines at Michael Symons B SPOT restaurant are a little shorter and there is a HUGE new team shop.
Parking around the arena seemed to dip about $5 per lot. The B SPOT is offering some awesome new dishes. Although the team shop is one of the best in the league, its hard to decide what player jersey to get. Who knows what player is taking his talents where this and next season.
As for the game itself, the only thing missing was the guy who scored all the points, grabbed all the rebounds and ultimately took control of the game so The Cavs would win.
The Food Networks Guy Fieri is one of my favorite guests that we have had on the show. Hes funny, authentic and completely outta control! Since meeting him in person and joining him on stage at last years Fabulous Food Show at The IX Center, I have thoroughly enjoyed him as a guest and watching him on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.
We pre-taped an interview with him earlier today that will air Wednesday morning. It cracks me up when we ask him "104 Seconds of Random Questions". You can catch the segment by listening "LIVE" at www.Q104.com For more on Guys Fieris visit to Cleveland and Toohey and Fees appearance with him this weekend at The IX Center, check out the NEWS section on the site....
Kristi Yamaguchi stopped by the show this morning. Shes in town this morning to talk about the importance of flu shots.
We talked with her about her win on Dancing With The Stars and hit her up with 104 seconds of random questions on the show. You can hear the podcast on the Toohey and Fee page on www.Q104.com
What a game for the Browns! Peyton Hillis and Colt McCoy are proving to be the real deal. All of a sudden the Browns have knocked off the defending Super Bowl champs three years in a row AND have defeated the New England Patriots!! Its starting to feel like "next year" might actually mean something...
The Plain White Ts stopped by the show this morning to promote their early December CD release. They performed three "LIVE" songs including "1234, I Love You" and current single "Rythm of Love". They are super-cool guys who sounded fantastic. Im amazed at how good they sounded that early in the morning. If you missed it on the show this morning, we are going to replay their performance early Thursday morning. Its also available on our Toohey & Fee podcast at www.Q104.com
When Carrie Underwood won American Idol. I was at the finale in Hollywood and at the press conference immediately following the show. She was a tad shy, but could clearly sing and had all the makings of a superstar.
I later saw her in her first full concert tour a couple of years back at The Wolstein Center in Cleveland. That night, she looked great and she sang each song perfectly. The next morning, I took grief during our show suggesting that she didnt have much stage presence. Several callers really let me have it. I felt that she lacked the stage presence of a superstar.
This week at The Wolstein Center, she owned it. She looked like a superstar, sang like one and put on one of the best SHOWS I have seen. Every song was its own music video and she went out of her way to connect with the audience. Since her season 4 win at Idol, we have seen her grow into one of the music industries best performers!
Hosting The Masque of the Red Death Party was a total blast! Despite having to wear tights and getting killed at the end, it was a fun playing the role of Prince Prospero.
Nearly 500 people attended the first-time event in full-masquerade attire. The costumes were amazing and everyone enjoyed the various activities, food and drink.
I admit, I had to have my lines fed to me from off-stage by my dear friend Val Renner, but Im told my "acting" was good enough after the party-goers had several drinks in them.
I look forward to next year! This is a must-attend event and about to become an annual tradition for The Akron Civic Theatre.
Many thanks to Howard Parr, Val Renner, Suzie and the guy who killed me.
I cant begin to tell you how happy I am that Jen Toohey is leaving her afternoon show to join us in the morning on Q104. I have known Jen for 10 years and adore her personally and professionally. Shes very good at what she does and will bring a lot of laughter to our show.
Jen has one of the highest rated afternoon shows in Cleveland and has a huge fan base in Norhteast Ohio. Im so pleased our upper management enabled her to join us in the morning to solidfy our team and help take our show to the next level..
This past week, I enjoyd a Bloody Mary at Brewsters in Twinsburg, Ohio. Kim made it to perfection; not too spicey, but with a good kick. It also had all the "stuff" to make it a complete meal! LOL It had olives, a giant pickle and a jumbo shrimp. Honestly, the drink could have fed a small family! It was outstanding!
The last time I enjoyed a Bloody Mary that good was at The ParkView off of 25th in Cleveland. They served it in a jar to make it that much more fun.
Im now on a quest to find the best Bloody Mary in the area....If you have suggestions, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
This past week, I attended a Bourbon Tasting put on by Sprout Connections in downtown Cleveland. Although I enjoy Bourbon, I dont consider myself a "Bourbon guy".
Im told that you are a Vodka guy in your 30s, a Bourbon guy in your 40s and then its Scotch and Viagra 50+. (But not mixed together : )
We sampled Forester, Four Roses, Woodford Reserve, Basil Hayden, Bulleit Bourbon and my favorite, Knob Creek.
The countdown is on for the biggest party of the year! I cant wait for this Saturday nights "Masque of the Red Death" fundraiser at The Akron Civic Theatre!
The party is based on Edgar Allen Poes story and will feature tons of surprises. There will be live actors amonst the party-goers with "Death" lurking around every corner. I am sworn to secrecy on many of the details, but I can tell you there is a live horse with a head-less horseman, a great band, awesome food and drink and someone dies....
With the exception of the death, it should be a pretty good throwdown...
This Wednesday, Im making an appearance on WKYC Channel 3s "GOOD COMPANY" in full costume to promote the event. Make sure you check it out during the first segment right after 10am.
Tix for the party are $50 in advance and $75 at the door. For more on the event, check out www.reddeathparty.com
Its tradition at our house to take a Fall picture of our daughter Gabrielle. Each October, we try to find the right spot to snap a pic with the beautiful fall colors.
This weekend marks the 11th time we have ventured out to keep the tradition alive.
On Saturday afternoon, Gabby and I headed out to a nearby MetroPark and snapped the pic you see on the left.
I cherish this tradition and really enjoy the time with Gabs. Today was a perfect day to go on a hike and spend time together.
For a couple more pix from our hike, check out the "Gabby" photo gallery.
Nothing beats a good clam bake. In fact, did you know that there are more clam bakes in Ohio than in any other state? With all the practice we get tailgating, post-gaming and throwin' down in general, it really should come as no surprise.
Saturdays clam bake with friends was outstanding! I plan to attend a few more bakes before the season ends...
The Social Network is nothing like what I had expected.
I anticipated a glossy pop-cultured-filled throwaway movie.
Instead, its a smart, well-acted movie that sheds light on how FACEBOOK came to be.
The movie gives a one-sided version of the controversial story, but the strong performances and overall look make the movie a must-see.
If I were to criticize The Social Network, I would question the lackluster ending and its failure to capture the overall effect on a generation.
I give The Social Network a "thumbs" up AND a "poke".
THE TOWN is HEAT meets THE DEPARTED. Its the best movie I have seen in a very long time! Ben Affleck was awesome along with an amazing cast. It was easy to get caught up in the story and root for the bad guys.
If THE DEPARTED can win BEST PICTURE, so can THE TOWN. Totally loved it!
My expectations were high for the new Wall Street movie. Ater seeing an interview with Oliver Stone, I was convinced it was gonna be bigger and better than the first one. The giant cell phone and Charlie Sheen cameo were fun, but overall, Wall Street, for lack of a better word, was good....not great....
During my appearance at the new BEEF O BRADYS in Broadview Heights, I somehow got talked into eating The "SUPER DUBLINER". A massive roast beef sandwhich, with lots of mashed potatoes and toast. It was Carb-Fest 2010. 4 and-a-half pounds of good times. No one had eaten the HUGE meal in the history of that location...until today. Both promotioanl Russ from our Street Team and I knocked down the jumbo sandwhich in 19 and 21 minutes respectively.
We are both so proud...LOL....
After months of training, my wife Sue completed her first-ever marathon this morning in Akron, Ohio. She completed The Akron Marathon in 5 hours and 21 minutes. Very proud of her and pleased that our daughter Gabby was there to see her Mom rock it out!!
What a treat to see Ed Kowalczyk play an intimate show at The Beachland Ballroom. Less than 100 people attended as he played "LIVE" songs and new music from his solo project. Highlights included "All Over You", "I alone" and the encore that featured "Lightning Crashes and "Dance With You".
People who hide behind the internet to slam others and spread hate are cowards. Own what you say or get out of the way. If you cant claim your own words, they are irrelevant...
Having a blast this Labor Day Weekend! Lots of laughs with family and friends. We enjoyed seeing THE BREAKFAST CLUB at OctoberFEST in Berea. Gabs has enjoyed riding an ATV, golf cart and horses. Lots of good times chillin on the patio with close friends and family.
Hope you enjoy the rest of the weekend. Back "LIVE" on the radio tomorrow....
Its easy to get comfortable. I think most of us tend to get caught up in the day-to-day and ride the wave. Next thing ya know, someone else is controlling our outcome. We lose sight of our own passions and settle in.
I write this as a reminder to myself to constantly define what success means to me. What are my personal goals? What am I trying to accomplish? What truly makes me happy?
I have had that conversation with many people in recent weeks and Im surprised at how much we all stumble on defining what we really want and who we want to be. Its more about getting through the day rather than dreaming the big dream and living to our fullest potential.
I find myself knowing more about Brett Favres career intentions rather than my own. Getting real-time updates on Lindsay Lohans life getting on track seems to be more important than correcting my own weaknesses.
Im re-focused and committed to clearly defining what success and happiness means to me.
The answers are always within. The key is to define what it is we want and go after it.
Everyone has a story...the passionate kiss is the most important indication of true love...daughters are Angels from Heaven...we all have at least two major hurdles to overcome in our lives..every one of lifes most important lessons is hidden in the movie Top Gun...Life is a movie that we direct and pick the music...passion is the ultimate word...prayer is the ultimate connection...settling is failing...passive aggressive is nothing but insecurity..its not always about who comes into our lives, but who we purge from our lives..other peoples baggage should NEVER weigh us down...you should never BOO the home team-no matter how bad it gets...golf was invented to keep us all in check...if we dont throw it out there, it cant be caught...if we dont step into the arena, we are just a spectator to someone else who did...sushi is art...we all know what was whispered at the end of Lost In Translation and none of us are sayin...in the end, its all about our individual pursuit of one thing...
I rushed home a day early from vacation to host The BROWNS BACKERS annual KICK-OFF Party at Scoundrals last weekend.
The huge tail-gate-style party is one of my favorite events each year. Everyone is always so cool and has such a good time. Despite the massive down pour in the middle of the afternoon, we had a blast!
This year, The Browns new GM Tom Heckert made an appearance along with several players from the current roster and years past.
After that party, Im ready for some football!!
The ride was supposed to be a 200 mile journey from Seattle, Washington to Portland, Oregon over 2 days. The annual STP ride included 10-thousand cyclists who were scheduled to ride from The University of Washington to downtown Portland.
My three-man team included my two closest friends Woody and Dave. We set out on our adventure early Saturday morning determined to have a good time...and we did.
Anyone who bikes long distances knows its not about anyting but seat-management. Maintaining comfort to the, uh, lower region is critical to the success of the ride. Oh sure, there are those who have those fancy padded bike pants and others who apply powders and creams to their critical areas...then, theres me. The guy who decided to grip-it-and-rip-it.
We gutted out the first 100-ish miles on day one. A wrong turn at the end of the day left us in the middle of nowhere at DJs Country Market. The locals estimated that our hotel was anywhere between 2-17 miles from where we were. We had booked our nights stay at a waterpark so we could take advantage of the much-need hottubs. Upon our arrival, we learned the waterpark had shut down for the night.
Day 2 started with missing the scheduled breakfast. The huge pancake breakfast that we all dreamed about the night before. Instead, we ended up having microwaveable burritos from the local gas n sip. Im sure Lance Armstrong loads up on hot pockets before The Tour de France.
It was surprisingly cold that morning as we set our site on Portaland. Early on that day, I knew I was in trouble. Dave and Woody were holding their own. I was clearly starting to drag the team down. The rolling hills and colder weather were beating me up. My seat management was not going well. In fact, it felt like the woman who heated up my breakfast burrito to a piping hot inferno had taken it out of the microwave and placed it on the seat of my bike when I wasnt looking. The burning had reached epic levels. To put it another way, it felt like the morning after winning The Taco Bell Volcano Taco eating contest.
I was done. I couldnt go on. It was time to leave a tender moment alone.
When we reached out to STP officials about our options, they suggested we stop for help at the rest area a mile up the road. When we arrived in Winlock, Washington (Populaiton 1,200), we learned that our only option was to pay a local guy with a big enough truck to get the three of us to Portalnd.
There we were, three guys, three bikes. Stuck in the home of The Worlds Largest Egg. (Yes, they have a farm there and they boast about the man-made egg.) 80-miles to go and no back-up plan.
Thats when we met Brad. A local mechanic with a big truck. A man who made me feel much more athletic than I am. For $125, Brad agreed to help us finish our journey. We stuffed our three bikes in the back of the truck and the four of us, including Brads belly in the front of the, uh, rig. Needless to say, we made it to Portland.
I had the chance to hang out with Adam Lambert before his Cleveland show at PlayHouse Square Friday night. I am pleased with how kind and down-to-earth he is. He took plenty of time with each person he met and was quite genuine.
I have to admit, I wondered what Adam we were gonna get after all the crazy performances on Idol, the music award show controversy and that whacked out hair thing he does...
He joined us wearing a backwards baseball cap and pre-show attire. The "real" Adam is a very kind and givng person who was great behind-the-scenes. He was very happy to be there and so were we.
My daughter participated in her first swim meet this week.
For me, it had nothing to do with swimming. All I could see was an 11-year-old about to turn woman. My lil Angel from Heaven is growing up-and growing up fast!
How did those cute lil girl faces turn into adult-like expressions??? When did she go from lil kid oblivion to waiting-for-the-adults-to-get-their-act- together-so-we-can-get-on-with-it???
To everyone else, it was a chaotic frenzy trying to organize kids of all ages for a swim meet..For me, it was a chance to watch lil girl grow up a lil bit more...
The first-ever Mickey Sims Memorial Scholarship Golf Outing was a huge success this week at Aurora Country Club. The event raised over $10,000 for the scholarship fund.
I had a blast golfing with close friends and later hosting the "LIVE" auction. Former OSU Buckey/Seattle Seahawk and current member of The Detroit Lions, Rob Sims paid tribute to his late father as he hosted the event.
Im very proud to be a part of the outing and look forward to next year..
Many mixed emotions about meeting JOE JACKSON Friday morning in studio. On one hand, he is the father of "The King of Pop" and it was, afterall, the one year anniversary of Michaels death.
I havent heard anything good about Joe Jackson. In fact, he seems to be more self-absorbed with his own promotional agenda than the loss of his highly successful son.
During our interview, I noted that Mr. Jackson referenced Michael Jackson as an entertainer rather than a son.
In all fairness, Joe Jackson was kind to us on and off air. He even took the time to pose for pictures. But there is certanly a shady vibe that surrounds him.
Comedian Tom Papa stopped by the show this morning and spent an hour with us. You may know Tom as "The Marriage Ref" or as Jerry Seinfelds friend and sometimes opener.
Tom is a naturally funny guy both on and off stage. He fit comfortably into the show this morning as we talked about everything from oil spills to Fathers Day.
He will be at Hilarities all weekend. Tom is a comedians comedian and doesnt find it necessary to take his comedy to the lowest of levels. Hes hilarious and doesnt need that as a crutch. To me, thats the highest level of comedy.
Comedians are among the most difficult people to interview. Often, the expectation is that they will be "on" the whole time and come prepped with all kinds of funny lines about the news of the day. In most cases, however, the opposite is true. Because of travel and performance schedules, comedians often do morning radio and TV reluctantly. This was the case with Rob Schneider who stopped by Friday morning.
Schneider was in town this weekend to do a couple of comedy shows at Hilarities. He stopped by our show on Friday morning for a couple of quick segments. He wanted on the air right away or he was going to leave. When he got on the air, he was all over the road. It was hard to get a word in-especially when he went on a serious rant about the BP oil spill. In my opinion, he disrespected us when he forced us to change up our show to accomodate him.
After our show, Schneider went on "GOOD COMPANY" on channel 3 and clearly didnt want to be there. He was smug and very difficult. Personally, I found him to be rude to the shows host Andrea Vecchio.
To the average fan, he is funny and down to earth. Behind-the-scenes he came off as arrogant and clearly had better things to do.
Ken Griffey JR is retiring after 22 seasons in the Major Leagues.
After hitting well over 600 homeruns and countless dazzling catches in centerfield, he is leaving the game for good.
I first covered him on the radio at my first radio job for KGMI in Bellingham, Washington. He was the son of Ken Griffey SR of The Cincinnati Reds and a superstar waiting to happen.
Along with my sports reporting duties on KGMI, I also was play-by-play man for TCI Cablevision who carried The single-A Bellingham Mariners on tape-delay on Saturday mornings. I had always wanted to do baseball play-by-play and this was a fantasy come true. I can remember reading promotional announcements between pitches for "Ken Griffey JR Bars". They passed them out at the games at Joe Martin Field. I can clearly remember interviewing him with my arm around him in front of the dugout after a game. Like a "real" announcer, I called him "Kenny". To this day, I wonder if anyone has those games on tape.
If only I knew then what I know now....
Nothing beats a good cigar enjoyed at the right time. With the warm weather showing signs of consistency, I have enjoyed a few good cigars this "season".
Ive always enjoyed smoking a cigar on the golf course. In my handful of rounds so far this year, I have had a few quality cigars.
But Fridays DAVIDOFF ANNIVISARIO Number 2 in the courtyard of "VELVET" in Lorain is the best so far! I got the cigar as a gift of appreciation for hosting a charity event in Lorain.
DAVIDOFF is my favorite cigar and I enjoyed every bit of it.
Mondays STP training ride helped build some much needed momentum as the countdown to July continues. The SEATTLE TO PORLAND ride is a 2-day 200 mile ride that will take endurance.
As I step up my training rides, I got a momentum boost that I needed. Stringing together a few rides has helped get me on track. This week I plan to increase the length of each ride and begin cross-training.
NEWSCHANNEL 5 Sports Director ANDY BASKIN has obtained a transcript of todays taped interview with LARRY KING which is set to air Friday night.
King: Do you lean at all toward the place you know the best? I mean do they have an edge going in...
JAMES: Oh, absolutely.
KING: ...your home team?
JAMES: Absolutely. Because, you know, this city, these fans, I mean, have given me a lot in these seven years. And, you know, for me, its comfortable. So I...ve got a lot of memories here. And - and so it does have an edge.
Biking is all about seat management and overcoming the fear of losing all feeling in those hard to reach private places. Although endurance will be key to my 200 mile ride from Seattle to Portland, overcoming my own biking "demons" is the real challenge.
So far I have experienced tightness in muscles I didnt know existed. I have lost all feeling with the numbing of hands and child making parts of the body and I have hit a lack-of-cardio wall ten miles into each ride.
My training for the July ride has included rides of 15, 16 and 27 miles this week. I plan to increase the lengths of the rides and step up my cardio workouts.
BON JOVI plays Blossom July 12, 2010.
Tickets are $175, $125, $85 and lawn $30 and go on sale Saturday, June 5 at 10am but you can buy yours early with the Q104 internet presale Friday, June 4 (10am-10pm) password: WQAL
I taped a guest-host appearance on "GOOD COMPANY" on WKYC Channel 3 yesterday. The show is set to air Memorial Day.
Doing TV is always such a different experience than doing a radio show. Although out of my element, I always have a good time working with my friend Andrea Vecchio and local legend Fred Griffith.
During the show, i talked about the new Russell Brand movie "Get Him To The Greek" and hosted the "Jungle Bob" animal segment. Its always a good time talking to lizards, giant turtles and snakes...LOL.
The show will air Monday at 10am on WKYC Channel 3.
Sad to hear about the firing of Cavs Head Coach Mike Brown. He's a class act who brought winning to Cleveland for 5 straight years. Coach of the Year, a trip to The NBA Finals and the play-offs EVERY year he coached. I wish Mike and his family all the best.
Take the kids to Shrek 4...just make sure you pay matinee prices.
How sick is Bret Michaels?? Near death-then mass media blitz??
LOST...um, Im LOSTER...
My heart goes out to the engineers at WEWS...ouch!
My daughters travel soccer team got crushed 9-0 yesterday. ugh.
Enjoyed a round of golf at Sleepy Hollow in Brecksville, Ohio on Sunday. Always good to break 100 early in the season.
Gotta step up the bike training. Less than two months til STP.
SHREK 4 opened as the top movie with this weekends box office. Its the third biggest movie this year behind IRON MAN 2 & Alice in Wonderland.
SHREK 4 is the worst of the four movies. I was content with the first two. The last two are clearly attempts to milk it for all they can.
My daughter thought the movie was good....but not great.
Although I love watching movies in 3-D, Im not sure why they made the effort. Apparently its the "IN" thing to do in Hollywood.
I ultimately decided the franchise should call it quits when I was reminded that, somehow, "DONKEY" was romantically linked to that giant dragon.
Bring the kids. Make sure you pay matinee prices.
I had a chance to hang out with Heather Mitts from The US Womens Soccer team yesterday on our morning show. The team is in town preparing for Saturdays "friendly match" against number two ranked Germany at Cleveland Browns Stadium.
The game is considered a tune-up for next years Womens World Cup. The US and Germany are the top two teams in the world and it should prove to be a great match.
This is a great opportunity for soccer families to bring their kids to see world-class soccer. These players are the best of the best and great role models on and off the field.
Before The Cleveland Cavaliers get trigger happy and fire Head Coach Mike Brown, they should remember their history AND his...
Last years coach of the year lead his team to the best record in the NBA two years in a row. Before that, he coached The Cavs into The NBA finals against San Antonio. Remember when Cleveland gutted out that huge upset against the heavily favored Detroit Pistons?? No Shaq, no Mo...
LeBrons supporting cast wasnt all that supportive....but still, somehow, they made the finals.
This year, "KING" James called out Brown on more than one ocassion publicly. Is that what champions do? Call out their coach publicly over Zs playing time? Did you read between the lines during the playoffs when LeBron suggested he followed "the game plan". Did you hear LBJ take responsibility for the collapse? No. He sure took credit for the team when they won. He proudly proclaimed he was the leader of the team. Did he say that after game six last week?
Where was four time NBA Champion Shaquile Oneal during the playoffs? Where was his leadership? His experience? We hear from several internal sources that even he called out the coach in the lockerroom. Are these guys coachable? Or bigger than the game? One guy calls himself "KING" and the other calls himself Superman. Hmmm...
Lets not forget the off court distractions. Shaqs divorce. Delontes legal issues and personal problems.
Is Coach Brown about to take a bullet for a team that is riddled with personal problems off the court and over-sized egos on the court and in the lockerroom?
Its pro basketball and stuff happens. Coaches often take the fall. In this case, before we place the blame on the coach, lets not forget where we have been and who coached us there.
Either way, I wish Coach Brown all the best. Hes a good man on and off the court.
IRON MAN 2 is AWESOME! Despite a brief lag in action at the midway point, the movie was just as good as the first one. Scarlett Johannson is a great addition to an already strong cast. She gave IRON MAN 2 the extra punch it needed with her performance as a Russian agent. She looks amazing and she pulled off the role to perfection.
As I walked out of the theatre, I wondered if Robert Downey JR was disappointed that he had to kiss Gwyneth Paltrow rather than Scarlett Johannson. Isnt he powerful enough in Hollywood where he could have switched that up??
Although Gary Shandling looked terrible as a politician, his role was quite amusing.
I highly suggest you see it and can't wait for IRON MAN 3....
To others, it lasted only a couple of seconds. It was a simple toss of a baseball. To me, it was a dream come true and something to check off The Life List.
Throwing out the ceremonial first pitch at Progressive Field Wednesday afternoon is something I will remember for the rest of my life. It was such a treat to be able to warm up on the field as the players got ready to start their game.
I didnt realize that there was an option to actually step on to the mound and throw an actual major league pitch. I had only seen the first pitch tossed from in front of the mound. Because it was a multi-person first pitch involving everyone from our show, we opted for in front of the mound just to be safe. We wanted to be certain we all would successfuly complete the pitch. And, for the record, we did. My new goal is to do it again...this time from the mound.
The world renowned Cleveland Orchestra held a rare open-rehersal Tuesday night at Severence Hall. My daughter Gabby and I attended to watch them prepare for this weekends performances of Carmina Burana.
To see one of the top orchestras in the world perform along with a full choir was amazing. It was awesome to experience such a powerful piece of music.
This is the second time I have seen The Cleveland Orchestra perform and I plan many more in the future.
Wilde and Fee kicked off the 5th Annual Q104 Pledge for Pets Radiothon Friday morning. The day started with a live TV appearance on WEWS Newschannel 5 and was followed by a 12-hour broadcast that ran 6am-6pm at The Cleveland Animal Protective League.
We are pacing about $9,000 off of last years total at the midway point, but we are expecting a solid day on Saturday.
Saturdays broadcast runs 10am-4pm and includes an appearance from American Idols Jason Castro at 1pm.
The Q104 Pledge For Pets RadioThon is set to begin tomorow at The Cleveland Animal Protective League. This is the 5th time we are doing the two-day broadcast to raise money for animals. So far, we have helped raise a half a million dollars and look to dramatically increase that number this weekend.
I have been a part of many community service events and helped raise money for many deseriving charities over the years, but The APL broadcast is, by far, the most special of all. The passion and dedication of the staff at The APL and true love of animals from our audience brings out the best of everyoine involved.
This past fall, my family adopted "Lucy" from The APL after my daughter had been part of the volunteer fostering program. Everyone on staff at Q104 has adopted pets from The APL and is greatly supportive of this wonderful event.
On Saturday, American Idol Jason Castro will stop by our broadcast at 1pm.
Our Friday broadcast will run 6am-6pm and our Saturday broadcast will run 10am - 4pm.
Watch for us on WKYC channel 3 for a live cut in during their morning news.
Ed Kowalczyk from LIVE has a new disc coming out in July. The first single can be heard on his FaceBook Fan Page. Its a good song. I like it a lot. Here are the lyrics...
spend a little time standin on the front lines
and you really cant talk at all
your mind begins to wonder
is there any love at all?
the photographs you took
yeah there was somethin in their eyes
every saint used to be a sinner
every man used to be a child
you said it was all in inside my mind
you were wrong
there was grace
you saw the enemy
I saw your face
people like you and I
spinninÂ through space
you were wrong
I still have faith
everytime I feel the sunshine
I thank the Lord up above
for seeinÂ somethinÂ I
couldnÂt see at all
cominÂ down hard
the feelinÂs all gone
where are we gonna hide?
my wings are feelinÂ clipped now
and all I wanna do is fly
somethinÂs gotta give
get up, stand up, see through it
gotta get this message to you
you said life donÂt mean a thing
that thereÂs no reason left to dream
Dick St. John passed away last week. He was my wife Susans father and Grandfather to my daughter Gabrielle. He was an amazingly wonderful man who will be missed by everyone he knew.
He was born and raised in Akron, Ohio. Grandpa St. John was a former FBI agent who loved his work. He was a hero to so many people both personally and professionally. He gave so much of his time and money to charity work; often without anyone knowing he gave.
For years, he had dreamed of riding in The Goodyear Blimp. We helped him live that dream during a visit just a couple of years ago. He thought it was so cool as he sat next to the pilot. It was such an awesome experience and one that I will remember forever.
Its a very sad time at our house this week. He will be greatly missed. Our hearts are heavy. But we are blessed with the knowlege that he lived a full life and made the world a better place.
I have to admit, Im like a little kid about throwing out the first pitch at The Cleveland Indians game next week!! It has been on the life-list for a long time. I love baseball and have wanted to throw out the first pitch at a Major League game for as long as I can remember.
Things didnt go so well last season when I threw out the first pitch in Avon for Lake Erie. Lets just say that the ball ended up in the home teams dugout...and no, I wasn't trying to be funny.
This time, Im sure it will go much better. I'll have help from Rebecca Wilde, Glenn Anderson and Producer Nick from our show.
The game is May 5th against Toronto at Progressive Field. Game time is 12:05pm.
Despite frigid temps, The NHSA Spring Soccer season got underway this morning in Nordonia Hills.
Its hard to believe this is the 6th season for the league that I co-founded with my friend Tom Seasholtz. Our goal has been to improve the level of play in the area and grow the travel soccer program in Nordonia Hills.
We have been able to form five travel teams and grow our academy each season.
My daughter Gabby has been with us every step of the way. She is on our u-11 travel team and also participates in our academy. She loves playing soccer...although I think its much more social than it is sport : )
She scored her teams only goal in her spring travel opening game and blasted four goals in academy play this morning.
For more on our league and tons of photo galleries, check out our league website at www.nhsasoccer.org
Edwin McCain played The Cleveland House of Blues Saturday night in a show that had a lil somthing for everyone...
Along with playing his popular hit songs, he also played the new single from his new 16-track Greatest Hits CD called "Walk With You".
My personal highlight was his version of Bob Marleys "No Woman No Cry".
A fight broke out near the front of the stage halfway through Edwins set. It was finally broken up after Edwin himself had to call for security. How could they have anticipated an altercation between Edwin McCain patrons??
It was great cathing up with Edwin after the show. Hes a very funny guy and always a strong radio interview. Hes always been one of my favorites both on and off stage.
Chris Daughtry clearly graduated from rockstar school. Thursdays concert at The Wolstein Center in Cleveland was awesome...and it was all him! He performs every song like hes making a video. Hes got every rockstar move down. The two-handed mic grasp as he looks to the sky, the rockstar point to random people in the crowd and sky and the angry rocker face at the approprite times. It was a rock show centered around him. Its hard to believe he finished FOURTH at American Idol. Perhaps that a good thing for his rock street cred....
The highlight of the night was his covering of Phil Collins / In the air Tonight and Billy Idols / Rebel Yell.
I have always said that LIFEHOUSE is an underrated band. From their first single "Hangin' by a Moment" to their current stuff from SMOKE AND MIRRORS, they have always been consistently strong.
As an opener to DAUGHTRY last night at The Wolstein Center, they decided to play several new songs and were unable to play ALL of their hits. Jason Wades voice was strong, as usual, but I felt the absence of the hit singles that made them who they are.
Behind-the-scenes, the guys could not have been kinder. They played a private performance for a small group of listners before the show. They came off as quite genuine and were very accomadating to everyone.
I look forward to seeing them headline their own show soon.
Saturdays Our Lady Peace concert at The Riviera outside of Buffalo was a real treat! It was intoxicating being in a small venue with true fans of the band.
The show featured a little bit of everything for a seasoned Our Lady Peace Fan. The evening was billed as "Our Lady Peace Recreates Spiritual Machines" (A concept album). After "Spiritual Machines" and a brief intermission, OLP came strong in the second half of the show with a parade of their hits. "Starseed", "Clumsy", "Supermans Dead", "Somewhere Out There", "Innocent" & "Angels are Losing Sleep" and others. "Naveed" was noticeably absent from the playlist.
My personal highlight from the show took place when Raine Maida turned his mic to the crowd as everyone in the building sang the first verse of "4am". It must be a thrill for the band to have a building full of fans sing EVERY word to most of your songs all night long.
Q104 has re-launched the website at www.Q104.com !! It looks great! Much easier to navigate and a much better look! I hope you take a few minutes to check it out. The Wilde & Fee page has a new look along with our individual pages. The site is constantly getting updated and has a fresh new approach. Let me know what you think!
Michael Buble is that good! Before Tuesdays show at The Wolstein Center, I had seen him two times before; once in Cleveland and last year in Houston. Each time, he put on an amazing show! Last night was no exception. Michael Buble is this generations Sinatra. Hes just got it. He is personable, charming and he can sing. He makes it look so effortless. The highlight of the evening was his brief tribute to Michael Jackson (with dance moves). He clearly accomplished his goal of "making a stadium show intimate". He played all his hits and owned the crowd from start to finish. I truly enjoyed the show and look forward to seeing him again.
Matt Damon isnt getting the credit he deserves for both "INVICTUS" and now, "The Green Zone". I loved both movies. Damon found himself in the shadow of yet another strong performance from Morgan Freeman in "INVICTUS". But in "The Green Zone", Damon is front and center in this modern day "Wag The Dog" action flick about the war in Iraq. The movie is both believable and yet another reminder of what probably REALLY happens behind-the-scenes in our government. This was my kinda movie. I highly recommend it.
I can't begin to tell you how thrilled I am for this summers "STP" ride from Seattle, Washington to Portland, Oregon. The mid-July ride is over 200 miles long and, no doubt, will prove to be one of the biggest challenges of my life!
I will be riding alongside two of my closest friends; Kevin Justik, who grew up in the Portland area and who has worked all over the country with me and my best man and first morning partner Dave Walker. Dave grew up in the Seattle area and has done this ride before.
In 2005, I rode around Lake Tahoe with Team in Training. Four years ago, I did "Pedal to the Point" from Cleveland to Sandusky, Ohio and back.
I have to admit, waking up the next day after riding the first leg of "Pedal to the Point" was tough. It felt like I was hit by a bus. Honestly, I dont know how I made it back that day. I plan to me more prepared and in much better shape this time for the 2-day Seattle to Portland ride.
We came up with the idea to ride in the "STP" early this year. I am confident the ride will inspire me to get my health plan back on track. The workouts and diet plan need a huge jump start and this will certainly work.
Welcome to the all new allanfee.com! I am thrilled with the new look and cant wait to hear your feedback! Be sure to check back for updated blogs and news along with tons of pix in the photo galleries.
In the near future, I will also be adding new audio files with interviews and other segments from the show.